Written by the Apostle Paul most likely around 62 AD as a prisoner in Rome.
3-6: God chose us and predestined us for adoption as sons. This means that God chose to save us, and that apart from God’s grace and the working of the Holy Sprit, believers would not be saved. We do not simply choose to become Christians without God working in our lives.
7-8: Through Christ’s blood we are redeemed and forgiven, meaning we are no longer slaves to sin or the desires of the world. We are saved not from anything we do, but from what Jesus did on the cross.
9-10: What was once a mystery (when the Messiah, Jesus, would actually come, and what all God had planned for him), has now been made known. This was not done at a random time, but had been planned at the perfect time.
Question: If God has not only done everything necessary to save us through Christ, and has also chosen to save us, how should we respond to this? How does it feel to know Christ not only took your punishment but also chose to save you? With this in mind, how should this cause us to live our lives?
11: All believers are saved because God has willed it to be so (even though we have all sinned against him).
13-14: Believers are sealed with the promised Holy Spirit. This means that are salvation is secure. This makes sense as there is nothing we can do to earn our salvation, so there is nothing we can do that would cause us to lose it.
Question: Unlike all other world religions, Christians know exactly what it takes to be saved (faith in Christ) and therefore can know for sure they are saved. How does it make you feel to know your salvation is secure? How does knowing this help us when we share our faith?
19-20: The power of God to defeat sin and save sinners is shown in how he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at is right hand in the heavenly places.
21: God’s power is (clearly) greater than anyone or anything in this world.
22-23: Christ is now head over all things. The Church is his body. This means that the church is full of Christ’s representatives in the world. To belong to a local body believers is essential to spiritual growth and maturity.
Question: One major theme in Ephesians 1 is that believers are now given the same inheritance that is Christ’s. Another is that are salvation is accomplished through Christ alone. God is freely given believers not only salvation but a lavish inheritance in the age to come. Knowing that we are sinners given all of this by God’s grace, how should we respond to this? The Christian life is not the easy life, does this encourage you to want to follow Jesus even more?