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Chosen and Blessed

May 8, 2016 Speaker: Fred Greco Series: Ephesians

Topic: AM Service Passage: Ephesians 1:1–6

We live in a “what have you done for me lately” kind of world. So many people expect that in order to have successful relationships, they must work to get others to care for them. There can be nothing more wearying than constantly struggling to do “enough” to earn and keep the love of others. Now just imagine what kind of weight it would be to try to earn the love of an all-perfect God! Just the thought of that weight brings despair, and yet so many people based their entire lives on that principle – thinking that they can earn and merit the love of God. But the good news of the gospel is that the Lord our God does not want us to present our wages before Him. The Apostle Paul, who began his life by resisting the Lord and persecuting His people, was brought to Jesus Christ by the unmerited grace of God. Like each of us, Paul actually demerited the love of God, but God had set His love on Paul long ago. Paul reminds us that the love of God is not rooted in us or our actions but in the good pleasure of God, who before the foundations of the world chose for Himself a people and predestined them for adoption into His family. Paul sets the stage for all he will teach in his letter to the Ephesians with this critical truth, that in Jesus Christ we are “Chosen and Blessed” (Ephesians 1:1-6).

I. The Saints
A. Paul the Apostle
B. Those in Christ

II. The Elect
A. Chosen By God
B. Predestined to God’s Family

III. The Blessings
A. That We Experience
B. That We Witness

Questions for consideration: (1) What does it mean to be “in Christ”? How does that affect your everyday life? How should it? (2) What is the most difficult thing for you to understand about election? What is it about election that is comforting or encouraging? (3) Why do you think Paul focuses on praising God’s grace instead of his own benefits?

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