Ephesians 2:14-22 The House That God Builds

by | Jun 1, 2023 | Ephesians, New Testament

I. The Accomplishment Of The Cross Vs. 14, 15

A. One New Man

1. The text speaks of the cultural and spiritual difference between Jews and Gentiles.
2. Verses 11-13 speaks of the contrast between Jews and Gentiles.
3. Add to that the great hatred that Jews had towards Gentiles, and vice versa.
4. Jews of that day never believed that Gentiles could have relationship with God.
5. V. 14-He is our peace– Speaks of the union that Jew and Gentile found in Christ.

a. Not- He brought us peace, but He is our peace.
b. These two people groups were made one as they put their faith in Christ.
c. Jesus doesn’t talk people into oneness, He makes them one.
d. It is up to us to recognize that oneness we have in Christ.

6. In the temple, between the court of the Gentiles and the court of the women, there was a physical barrier, an actual wall of separation between Jew & Gentile.
7. Paul was, at the time of this writing, under house arrest in Rome, awaiting trial because he was falsely accused by the Jews of taking a Gentile into the temple past the literal wall of separation dividing Jew and Gentile.
8. Paul makes it clear that in Jesus, the wall is gone.
9. V. 15- The enmity, or hatred, that the Jews had against the Gentiles was that they were without God, and without God’s Word.

a. The Gentiles lived in idolatry, not knowing the ways of God like the Jew.
b. The Jews had God’s Word, and as a result, felt superior.

10. The problem for both groups was this: Neither group obeyed the law of God.

a. The Gentiles didn’t have God’s Word, and as a result, didn’t obey it.
b. The Jews had God’s Word but didn’t obey it.
c. As a result, both groups were guilty before God, and in that sense, equal.
d. The result of understanding the expectations and standards of God’s Law is that all people realize that they have fallen short. Read Romans 3:9-24

11. Jesus came and kept the Law of God perfectly. He lived a perfect life.
12. He fulfilled the Law on behalf of those who put will their faith in Him.
13. He died to pay the penalty of those who had failed to keep God’s Law.
14. Therefore, the contention between Jews and Gentiles was abolished.
15. No longer were there Jews, no longer were there Gentiles: only Christians
16. One new man. One new race. One new people group. Created in Christ.

B. Reconciled To God Vs. 16-18

1. These two people groups were not only reconciled to one another.
2. They were first reconciled to God.
3. The Gospel message comes to those who are close and those far away.
4. Through Jesus, all men can have access to the Father, regardless of race or culture.
5. V. 18- Notice the work of the Triune God. Through Jesus, by the Spirit, to the Father.

C. Application For Us

1. People groups who are most opposed find oneness in Jesus.
2. Ethnic and cultural hatred is done away with when people realize these truths.
3. If you still struggle with racism, prejudice, ethnic disdain, age and culture preference, then you don’t fully realize that the Christian you dislike is no better or worse than you.
4. You have yet to realize the oneness that Christ has created between you and them.

II. The Building Of The Church

A. Our Identity V. 19

1. No longer strangers and foreigners.

a. Strangers– foreigners in state as opposed to citizens.
b. Foreigners– guests in a home as opposed to being part of a family.

2. Now fellow citizens, saints, members of the household of God; not 2nd class.
3. Application– Your history doesn’t matter. There are no stepchildren, or 2nd class.

B. Our Home

1. Our foundation. V. 20

a. The foundation of the church came through the teaching of the apostles and prophets, as God revealed His truth to them.
b. The foundation only needed to be laid once. No further foundation works.

i. The Mormon Church claims the need to have a continuing office of a Prophet and 12 Apostles. They claim that without those offices functioning, there is no spiritual authority in the church.
ii. If the first Apostles and prophets were called to lay the foundation for the church, then that job is done. The foundation is laid.
iii. There may be those who function in a lesser sense as Apostles and Prophets.

c. Jesus: The Cornerstone. (Also called a foundation stone)

2. Our oneness V. 21a

a. The Jews would never think of being joined together with Gentiles. Blacks with whites. Latinos with Asians. Professionals with laborers.
b. Jesus building His church is like a contractor taking stones of different sizes, shapes, densities, color, and composition, and somehow fitting them together into something beautiful and functional.
c. How much easier it is to build using blocks of uniform size, shape, and density. That would be functional, but not interesting or beautiful.
d. “Being fitted together”- literally- closely together. As a stone mason, God is still chipping on us at times to fit us together. Without His work in us and on us, we don’t fit together, and the building is weak.
e. God chooses us, determines our place, chisels us, and sets us into place

3. Our purpose Vs. 21b, 22

a. There is a fitting together, a togetherness that needs to be maintained.
b. Not only a togetherness, but a growing together, which calls for interaction.

4. Read 1 Peter 2:4-10