Please read Acts 28, Ephesians 1 and Ephesians 2 today. Continuing Paul’s missionary journey – and finishing Acts today! What’s your hight? Here are a few of mine:
“when Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks and laid them on the fire, a viper came out because of the heat, and fastened on his hand. So when the natives saw the creature hanging from his hand, they said to one another, “No doubt this man is a murderer, whom, though he has escaped the sea, yet justice does not allow to live.” But he shook off the creature into the fire and suffered no harm. However, they were expecting that he would swell up or suddenly fall down dead. But after they had looked for a long time and saw no harm come to him, they changed their minds and said that he was a god” Acts 28:3-6 NKJV
It’s funny the immediate and extreme reactions: first, Paul must be a murderer because of the snake bite. When the bite didn’t kill him, he must be a god because he survived. We make those same instant and often uninformed judgements today, don’t we?
A few highlights, bullet style today – it’s so important that we don’t skim these familiar parts and miss these big truths. Paul’s ministry always points us back to Jesus.
“He chose us” Ephesians 1:4-6 Praise God, what a blessing and comfort to be chosen
“In Him we have redemption” Ephesians 1:7 That’s everything, isn’t it? In CHRIST, we have redemption.
“In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.” Ephesians 1:13-14 – In CHRIST we trusted, and the Holy Spirit is the guarantee of our inheritance, precious.
Don’t miss 1:17-20 – now we are made alive where our sins had once made us dead, through the sacrifice of CHRIST.
“now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ” Ephesians 2:13 – we are brought near by the blood of CHRIST. We must never forget what a high price was paid so that we can live reconciled unto God.
“For He Himself is our peace” Ephesians 2:14 – regardless of our feelings or circumstances, CHRIST is our peace.