I love the book of Ephesians, which teaches us about our identity in Jesus Christ. This post is intended to do an overview of the book of Ephesians. This fall, when my Bible study begins again, I will be teaching the entire book of Ephesians. At this time, I will post my lessons online.
I have titled this lesson “Sit, Walk, Stand, Bow” because this is a good outline for the book of Ephesians. In the first two chapters we learn where we sit in relation to Jesus Christ. In Chapter 3 we learn about a mystery and how to bow before the Lord. In Chapters 4 and 5 we learn how to walk worthy of the calling in which we were called. Then in chapter 6 we learn how to stand against the devil and his adversaries. If we want to be able to stand, then we are first going to have to learn how to sit, walk, and bow.
The book of Ephesians is a letter written by the Apostle Paul to the church of Ephesus. He begins this letter with a greeting, “Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints who are in Ephesus, and faithful in Christ Jesus:” Eph 1:1 (NKJV). In Paul’s letter, he usually identifies himself at the beginning of the letter and then he states who the letter is written to. Notice that he calls the believers in Ephesus “saints”. Did you know that if you are a believer in Jesus Christ, then you are a saint? You don’t have to wait until you die to become a saint, but you become a saint as soon as you are saved from your sins. Many people remain in bondage after they are saved, because they don’t realize who they are in Christ. Have you ever heard the statement, “I am a sinner saved by grace”? This statement is misleading because it assumes the believer is still a sinner. According to the Bible you were a sinner before you were saved, but after salvation you became a saint. The Bible always refers to the lost as sinners, but a believer is never called a sinner in the Bible. This does not mean that a believer is sinless, but we no longer have a sin nature. Instead of calling ourselves sinners, we should instead call ourselves “a saint who sins.”
In Ephesians 2:4-6 we learn who we are in Christ. “ But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5 even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6 and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus” Eph 2:4-6 (NKJV). According to this verse we, as saints, are seated with Christ in heavenly places. This is not in the future but in the present tense. I don’t understand this verse totally, but I take God at his word. Even though I am seated in my office at this time, I am also mysteriously seated with Christ in heavenly places. The next time that you feel unworthy or are suffering from low self-esteem, tell yourself that you are a saint who is seated with Christ in heavenly places. If we realize that we are always seated in heaven, then we may decide to walk a little differently.
Now that we know where we are seated in heaven, we will learn how to walk in Christ tomorrow.