Ephesians 1:1, 2 Grace And Peace

by | May 30, 2023 | Ephesians, New Testament

I. Introduction To Ephesians

A. History

1. The City Of Ephesus

a. A great city of Asia Minor: A Roman capital. Chief city of the area.
b. A center for the worship of the false goddess Diana. The temple of Diana was one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, and the worship of this goddess was jealously guarded (Acts 19:23-27).
c. Wealthy commercial center on an ample harbor that invited world trade.
d. Paul was there three years, taught & established the church. (Acts 20:31)
e. From the city the Gospel spread out to “all Asia” (Acts 19:10).

2. The Church At Ephesus

a. Paul visited Ephesus on his 2nd missionary journey.
b. He left Priscilla and Aquila there (Acts 18:18-28).
c. He returned to Ephesus on his 3rd journey, remained 3 years (Acts 20:31).
d. Through Paul’s ministry, the city turned from Diana worship to Christ.
e. They burned their magic books of incantations.
f. The silversmith idol makers suffered financially, they stirred the crowds against Paul, and caused riots, forcing Paul to leave the city.
g. Later he met the Ephesian elders while traveling back to Jerusalem. (Acts 20:17-38)

3. The Letter To The Ephesians

a. Paul was in prison in Rome when he wrote this letter.
b. The letter deals with church truths, not particular problems.
c. Probably circulated throughout Asia Minor.
d. Deals with Truths of the Church, and practical Christian living.
e. Divides into 2 sections. Chaps. 1-3, doctrine. Chaps, 4-6, application
f. Another theme of Ephesians is “Sit, Walk, Stand”

i. Seated in Heavenly places. What God has done for us. (2:6)
ii. Have a walk worthy of the calling we have received. (4:1)
iii. Stand against Satan, being steadfast in God’s strength. (6:10, 13, 14)

B. Greetings From Paul Vs. 1-2

1. V. 1- Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God,

a. Apostle– one sent off as a representative. Personally sent; ambassador.
b. Paul was a sent ambassador to a world that needed to know Jesus.
c. Paul emphasizes that he was appointed by God.
d. He didn’t come, or write, or preach on his own.
e. He came with the authority and backing of God.
f. Therefore, his words should be received with reverence and seriousness.
g. He spoke on behalf of Christ. He was appointed by Jesus Christ.

2. To the saints who are in Ephesus,
saints– hagios-set apart.

a. Greeks used the word frequently. They had a “classical” meaning.
b. Certain sacrifices, building, people, for service to their gods.
c. “Set apart” was not for secular, or common use, but for religious use.
d. The Greeks did not attach to it, the thought of purity, or moral beauty.
e. Christian use elevated the word; connected w/morally pure & holy God.
f. This is our position before God. Set apart for God & His purposes.

i. We may often not feel very set apart for Him
ii. We may often not live set apart for Him.
iii. Not something you work up to, but something you immediately are when you are born again. We immediately become a saint.

3. faithful in Christ Jesus:

a. faithful– believing ones. This is a description of the saints at Ephesus.
b. Ones who believed & had faith in Christ, trusting Him for their salvation.

4. 2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

a. Paul’s standard greeting. The word mercy added in the pastoral epistles.
b. Called the “Siamese twins”, always found together. Grace precedes peace.
c. Grace- unmerited favor, a thing that brings joy to the hearers, that which is inherently beautiful of full of charm. That which stirs up thankfulness.

i. Later, Paul talks about grace that brought them salvation. (2:8, 9)
ii. Here, Paul is wishing upon them God’s grace for daily living.
2 Timothy 2:1 You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.

d. The Bible sometimes uses the classical meaning about beauty & charm.

i. See Luke 4:22 The beauty of the words brought joy to their hearts.

e. Not only the words, but the way the words were spoken.

i. See John 2:16, 17; Matthew 20:28
ii. The infinite God speaking through human lips.

Grace– unmerited favor. Includes charm and beauty.

5. and peace

a. It WAS by God’s grace we were saved.
b. God’s grace to us brings us to a place of peaceful standing with Him.
c. We have peace with God because of what Christ accomplished on the cross.
d. Peace– shalom. The common Hebrew greeting.

i. Peace– to join together.
ii. Also, a state of untroubled, undisturbed, well-being.

e. Two kinds of peace: Peace with God.
Romans 5:1 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ…
f. Peace of God- see Philippians 4:6, 7 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

6. from God our Father

a. We enter a father-child relationship when we are born again.
b. Regeneration makes us His children.
John 1:12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name…

7. and the Lord Jesus Christ.

a. Lord is His title. Kurios-master
b. Jesus is His name in Greek. Joshua was what He was called. Common.
c. Christ is His mission. Anointed One of God, sent to save.