Classic Christianity Radio (02-26-19) – The Mystery of God Part 2
Bob George continues teaching from the book of Ephesians concerning a mystery that the Gentile is saved the same way as the Jew, by faith in Jesus Christ. God planned before the creation of the world that in Him we were chosen to be made holy and blameless. Jesus Christ is the object of our faith. Sin entered the world through one man, Adam, and death through sin, so death came to all men because all sinned.
Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned
Sin, the cause of death, had to be solved for man to have new life, to be made holy and blameless. Only God is perfectly holy and blameless.
Exalt the Lord our God and worship at his footstool; he is holy.
So what man needs is the very life of God. The problem of sin was solved by the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Now, man is free to come to Jesus Christ for life. God was pleased to do this for man and lavished His grace on those who put their faith in Him. The problem of new life was provided when Jesus Christ rose from the dead. To those who simply put their faith in God’s provision through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, God placed His life, the Holy Spirit, to dwell in man.
1 Corinthians 15:1-4
1 Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. 2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. 3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures
4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.
He chose us in him before the creation of the world. The phrase, “in him”, is the key to understanding. Is this good news? God’s plan for the world is that for anyone who comes to His Son, Jesus Christ, God will see him as holy and blameless in His sight, from that day forward.
7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace
Redemption means to buy back at a price. What was the price God had set to buy back sinful man? What is the wages of sin, according to Romans 6:23?
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ
So then, God sent His Son, Jesus Christ into the world to become a sacrifice of sin. Jesus Christ came to pay the price of death for sin for man. Such a price was too great a price for any other man to pay, for sin is the cause of death. Jesus Christ, however, is God in the flesh, and so having no sin of his own, can willingly lay down his life to redeem man, and then to rise again. Jesus Christ shed his blood on the cross about 2000 years ago and then rose again and is seated at the right hand of God in glory!
In him, you have redemption. What else do you have, in him? You have the forgiveness of sin.
Your Sins Have Been Forgiven – Believe it and Quit Asking for What He Has Already Done, for “Without Faith, it is Impossible to Please God!”
Forgiveness of sin is a possession of yours, you who are born again. You are not getting forgiven. You are a forgiven person! Yet, how so many in the world today have not understood. Bob heard a woman on a radio program say to another person, “Have you asked Jesus to forgive you?” Bob, if he was on that radio program, would have said: “Don’t you know he already has? Do you not know that without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sin? And where these have been forgiven, there is no more sacrifice for sin. And if that is true, no more sacrifice for sin, no more shedding of blood, how then are you going to get forgiven unless Jesus dies again? For is not the shedding of blood necessary for sins to be forgiven? Don’t you know Jesus already did? Don’t you know that the shed blood of Jesus Christ was all-sufficient, an eternal sacrifice for sin, requiring no more sacrifice? Jesus said to the woman caught in adultery, ‘Get up and sin no more.’ Did not Jesus say, ‘If you are without sin, throw the stone; if not, go home.’ And to the woman, he said, ‘sin no more.’ Why don’t you tell someone Jesus has already forgiven you.”
How many of you ask Jesus to redeem you every day? If you are redeemed and truly are redeemed, how much sense is it to ask for Him to redeem you? “Gee, sir, I thought you were saved” would be a reasonable response to someone who says that. If you do not wake up for God to redeem you every day, then why ask to be forgiven every day? If you know you are redeemed, and you know you are forgiven, then your identity has been changed to “I am a redeemed and forgiven person.” If that is my identity, then that is who I am. I am a forgiven person. Is that good news?
Yet so many fail to grasp their new identity in Christ! Are you a forgiven person because you keep short accounts with God? Are you a forgiven person because you practice spiritual breathing? Are you a forgiven person because you go to the confession booth? Everyone of those things the Christian world has come up with to be forgiven. Catholics says they have to go to the confession booth to get sins forgiven. The protestants say you can go direct to God to get sins forgiven. God is up in heaven saying it is finished.
When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
People do not stop and think about what they are doing. Think about this logically. I am a redeemed person. If I am a redeemed person, then am I person who gets redeemed or am I a redeemed person? I am a redeemed person. I am a forgiven person and if I am asking God to do something he has already done, will I be acting in faith? No. If I am a forgiven person, then am I person who gets forgiven or am I a forgiven person? I am a forgiven person.
And without faith it is impossible to please God.
If I am to walk by faith, then am I walking by faith, knowing that I am in Christ, knowing that I am a redeemed person, yet saying “Please Lord, redeem me” or “Please Lord, forgive me”? Is that faith? If I was saying that, however pious or humble that may sound, would I be functioning by faith? No, I would not! Therefore, could I be pleasing to God? No. A person says, “I ask God to forgive me daily”, or “I keep short accounts with God”, or “I have every sin confessed”. Is that pleasing to God? No, you are not pleasing to God. Why? You are not acting in faith, and without faith you are not pleasing God.
Faith is believing what God has said in His word is true. What is pleasing to God is when you understand what God said is true, that you are a forgiven person. The Holy Spirit is saying, “I did it once, I did it for all, in order to make you holy and blameless in the sight of God. Were you predestined to be made that way? Yes! If so, then how do you think you will make yourself holy and blameless by what you do?” It is amazing how people negate faith, failing to grasp or hold onto the truth from the word of God!
9 he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.
He has made known to us the mystery of his will according to His good pleasure. God took pleasure to do what he had done.
What is this mystery? Turn to Ephesians 3 for clarification.
2 Surely you have heard about the administration of God’s grace that was given to me for you, 3 that is, the mystery made known to me by revelation, as I have already written briefly. 4 In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to people in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets. 6 This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.
God is going to save the Gentile in the same way He saved the Jew. All of that was predestined in the mind of God to take effect when the time had come. That time could not have come until Christ.
23 Until Christ came we were guarded by the law, kept in protective custody, so to speak, until we could believe in the coming Savior.
Until faith came we were held prisoners by the law. Faith could not come until Christ came. The object of our faith is Christ. Prior to that, faith was in the coming Christ. But until Jesus came, our faith could not come. Faith must have an object. The only object God ever intended for us to have is the object of His Messiah, Jesus.
11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,
In Him we [the believing Jews] were also chosen. Who is the also? Somebody else was chosen. That person is the Jew. Prior to this verse, he was talking to the Gentiles, that whole Asian city made of Gentile heathens, who are now in Christ, but now in this verse, Ephesians 1:11, he is referring to the Jew.
Has times reached their fulfillment? Yes.
The Jew and the Gentile are called to become one body in Christ Jesus. The dividing line of hostility, the law, has been ripped in two. For Jesus Christ fulfilled all of the law for us, setting the aside Old Covenant with the Jews, and making a New Covenant with all men, Jew and Gentile, through the gospel of God’s grace.
44 It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, 45 for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. 46 Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.
20 by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body,
by setting aside in his flesh the law with its commands and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace
God divides mankind into three categories; Jew, Gentile, and Ecclesia. The Ecclesia, meaning ‘called out ones’, is the new body of born again believers, made of both Jew and Gentile. Today, when you talk to a Jew, they would always say Jew and Christian, as if you cannot be both a Jew and a Christian. No, it is not Jew and Christian, but Jew and Gentile, and both needing to come to faith in Jesus Christ. A Gentile needs to say “Gentile by birth but Christian by new birth”. God’s desire for the Jew is also to say, “Jew by birth but Christian by new birth”.
12 in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory.
And, to know that he is definitely referring to the Jew, in verse 12, who were the first to put their hope in Christ? The gospel came to the Jews first.
13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.
And what is the end result in believing the gospel? New life is provided for man by the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We are saved by his life. His death was a necessary preparatory work, to take away sin, the cause of death, for the entire world, and for all sins; past, present and future. And when someone comes to faith in the living Christ, the resurrected Christ, what did God promise? That you would be made holy and blameless in His sight. What is the guarantee that you have this new life? He sealed the Holy Spirit, the very life of Christ, in you. You received new spiritual life. It is also a deposit guaranteeing that some day your body also will be raised to new life. You will receive a new immortal body, for flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God.
1 Corinthians 15:50
I declare to you, brothers and sisters, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable.
6 Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.”
And who is God waiting on to be redeemed? Is it not the remaining Jews, who face a hardening in part, until the full measure of the Gentiles comes in.
I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers and sisters, so that you may not be conceited: Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.