TEXT: Ephesians 2:6-7
READING: Revelation 5:1-14
SUBJ: The eternal purpose of God realized in the future hope of believers and the vantage point from which it is viewed.
AIM: That we might aspire to that which God intends to glorify Himself throughout all ages, world without end.
INTR: A precious jewel is often taken out of its place of safekeeping just to be admired and examined by the owner. Such is the case with Ephesians 2:1-10. Safely treasured in the heart of every true believer in the grace of God and appearing more precious with each new look. (Illustration: Suzie and her mother’s lost ring)
1. The Randy Alcorn question as to what we shall know in Heaven – Will we know everything?
2. Sometimes one’s assessment of a thing or a situation is greatly affected by the perspective of the observer. “Come over here so you can see it better.”
3. This passage of scripture brings us to a precious place from which to consider the things that God has prepared for us.
THESIS: Ultimately all that pertains to salvation is for God’s eternal glory and He is pleased to bring us to behold His glory through showing us in ages to come the exceeding riches of His grace.
I. The preferred seating of the believer (v. 6)
1. Raised up in the sense of being raised from the dead – see v. 1 and v. 5.
1) To a new vantage point in order to see the riches of His grace.
2) Consider the company – raised together and made to sit together in Christ
i. In the company of Christ certainly
ii. In the company of each other – note the use of “us” in these verses.
2. The location of our seating – in “Heavenly Places”
1) From the outset, Paul would have us to see: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: (Ephesians 1:3), and would seek to elevate our thoughts to a higher plane.
2) The Heavenly connection to the Kingdom of Heaven as it appears even now on earth Consider that we have been: Colossians 1:12-13 12 Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: 13 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:
3) We enjoy a present look with the expectation of an expanded view in the future.
3. The condition of our seating – In Christ Jesus. There is no heavenly place apart from Him.
4. The intent of Christ is declared: Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them. (Luke 12:37).
5. The desire of the Lord realized: And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. (John 14:3)
II. That which we are made to see (v. 7)
1. The “ages to come” reminds that The ages of the same Gospel that have passed and that the Gospel of Grace is the theme for all eternity as a continually unfolding theme.
2. What He will be doing – Christ our guide to the riches of His grace – both now and then
1) Here Him as He prays: Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world. (John 17:24).
2) Paul prayed in 1:19-23 for expanded comprehension.
3) Peter claimed: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, (1 Peter 1:3).
3. We consider the contents of His kindness and the grace in His kindness: And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory, (Romans 9:23).
1) The riches of His grace and we think of being “accepted in the Beloved…”
i. Cost – no less than the blood of Christ
ii. Value – an infinite provision for the salvation of believers
iii. Durability – in this life to sustain, to withstand and to show no wear.
iv. Longevity – To eternally provide all that enables a beholding of and a participation in the glory of God.
2) The abundance (exceeding) – that which goes beyond what appears to be needed. See verse 4! And see plenteous: Psalm 86:15 (mercy and truth); Psalm 103:8 (mercy); Psalm 130:7 (redemption).
4. We see in v. 6 that we are in Christ – here it is all seen as coming through Christ
1) The purpose clause indicates His purpose here – “that in the ages to come…”
2) “…but after having removed every trace of sin from us and having brought us to perfection and glory, grace will still have endless goodness and kindness to lavish upon us.” Lenski.
III. A few thoughts on why God saved us.
1. Obviously, it was His eternal purpose, but it was without cause as far as we are concerned.
2. The very nature of God (God is Love) moved Him in the direction of kindness and it is His glory to show mercy. (Remember the declaration to Moses).
3. Were it not for evil and those who rebel against Him we would not know the difference.
4. The aim is to manifest His kindness and mercy to those who love and adore Him throughout all eternity – the ages to come.