Book of Ephesians
Page 1 of 4
There are often two types of people within Christianity. There are those who focus primarily on intellect and right doctrine and they forget about right living. And there are those who focus primarily on mystical experiences concerning God and they forget about right doctrine. Listen as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones introduces the second half of Ephesians by giving a clear connection between both right doctrine and right living. Lloyd-Jones challenges the listener to read the Bible rightly within its context because it is the doctrine and the truths of Scripture that should inform our living. These two truths should not be separated, rather they are connected in a way that motivates sanctification. Learning doctrine and experiencing the blessings of God is not sanctification, instead they stimulate sanctification just as the sun and the rain stimulates the growth of a plant. Lloyd-Jones questions the listener by asking if they truly believe the glorious truths covered in the previous three chapters of Ephesians. If they do, then the logical conclusion is that they must act upon those truths with the practical application that Paul gives in the last three chapters. Be encouraged by this exhortation to work out your salvation by both learning right doctrine and living obediently to the Word of God.
The Christian life is not to be lived in a purely intellectual way, nor is it to be lived in a way that forgets about doctrine. The Christian life is to be lived worthy of the calling to which we have been called. Listen as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones gives clarity to how we are to walk worthy, and the calling to which we have been called. Lloyd-Jones begins by giving two definitions for the word worthy. First, is simply to have equal weight. As Christians the way that we walk worthy is by placing equal emphasis on both doctrine and practice. The second definition is becoming, or proper. It is proper to wear matching clothes. In the same way, it is proper for our life to match our doctrine. Doctrine must come first as the foundational garment, and the life comes second as the adorning garment. The second word the Doctor focuses on is calling. God has called us with an effectual call, and through this call he has saved us to himself. He has called us to be holy, to be a royal priesthood, to be his sons and daughters, to be co-heirs of Christ’s inheritance, and so much more. Because of this calling we are to walk in a manner that is worthy and pleasing to God.
Do you ever struggle to get along with a brother or sister in Christ? Conflict is an ongoing part of life today, just as it was for the church at Ephesus. This challenging message by Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones opens Paul's letter to the Ephesians and address how Believers can live in unity and peace. Rather than ignore sin or avoid confrontation, we must quickly exhort and forgive one another, guarding the unity of the Spirit, and guarding the fellowship of believers. This is supernatural unity that can only belong to those indwelt with the Spirit. Therefore, to not guard this unity is actually a grievance to the Holy Spirit. So how can we guard our Holy Spirit unity? Lloyd-Jones proclaims that being humble, gentle, patient, and bearing with one another are critical characteristics of believing relationships. We must do this because we love one another and we desire to guard our unity. Just as parents humbly serve and instruct their children with patience and gentleness, we must do the same thing with our brothers and sisters in Christ. This sermon will be a great encouragement to your personal fellowship with the church body.
Have you ever felt like your role in the church doesn't matter? In this encouraging sermon, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones unpacks Ephesians 4:4-6 to show four principles that prove the importance of every believer in the church. He begins by explaining the organic nature of the church, that every member is a completely new creation in Christ. Just as a baby is formed by a single cell, so also the church is created new in a single man, Christ Jesus. Secondly, the church is by nature diverse and unified. Just as a body is made up of many parts, so also is the church made up of many members with different roles. If it were not for the different parts of the body, then the body would be useless. Third, the body is interdependent. Each part of the body depends on the other. If one member suffers, the other members suffer. If one member is honored, the other members rejoice in it as well. Lastly, the body works toward the same end, and that is that the wisdom of God might be made known to the rulers and authorities of the heavenly places. This sermon will be an encouragement to all members of the body of Christ, for the simple fact that we are the body of Christ and we are a significant member.
What exactly is a church? Perhaps some are tempted to reference the building where people gather together to worship God. However, as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shows from Scripture, it is actually the body of believers in Jesus Christ. But if the church is a body, where did it come from, and who or what gives it life? The answer is the Holy Spirit, and in this sermon from Ephesians 4:4-6, Dr. Lloyd-Jones helps us understand the role that the Holy Spirit plays in the life of the church. First, He brings unity through the conviction of sin— this unites believers because when people realize how sinful they are before God, they realize that they have nothing of their own accord to cling to, thus driving them to their knees before the cross of Christ. Second, the Holy Spirit is the one who gives people a new life in Christ. Third, He gives people faith and enables them to have understanding of the ways of God. Fourth, He unites people to Christ and incorporates them into the church. Finally, The Doctor says, the Holy Spirit animates the life of the church. Like the blood in our bodies, He is the unifying presence that makes all believers one. Listen as Lloyd-Jones explains the importance of the Holy Spirit to the vitality of the church.
Revival. Many Christians today are praying for it. What is it, and what is the role of the Holy Spirit in it? Is revival something that is predictable? In this sermon from Ephesians 4:4-6, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones tackles these questions and more. “The one supreme need of the church,” The Doctor says, “is revival.” It is its only hope. What is revival? He defines it as the repetition to some degree of what happened at Pentecost, where the Holy Spirit fell on a number of people at the same time. According to Lloyd-Jones, revival serves two purposes: It raises the church to a new level of experience, and it brings those outside the church to repentance. Many Christians are wary of deep emotions in their Christian walk, and thus are afraid in a sense of revival coming. But is this biblical? In addition to walking through biblical support for revival, The Doctor reminds us that “the history of the church is a history of revivals.” What does the history of revivals teach us? Ultimately, it shows us that they are a work of God, not of man, and that it is our responsibility as Christians to pray earnestly for them. Listen as Lloyd-Jones answers common questions related to revival and its place in the life of the church.
There is no question that the church tends to be divided over many different issues— some are important, but many are centered more around preferences than essential doctrines. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches in this sermon from Ephesians 4:4 about divisions in the church and how a right perspective on our nature and on the Holy Spirit brings unity to believers and the church. The Holy Spirit not only prepares people to become Christians, but He makes us Christians as well and puts the seal of God on those who believe in Him. Realizing this hope of our calling provides something for believers to unite around. Another type of division that is common within the church regards the natures of people’s conversions and the depth of sin they were saved out of. Many believers feel that the depth of their relationship with the Lord is related to the intensity of their salvation experience. However, The Doctor explains why this is not only unbiblical, but also a hindrance to community within the church. He says, “We must not dwell on what we've been called from, but we must dwell on what we've been called to.” By focusing on our equally sinful condition before the Lord, our complete dependency on Him, and on the hope of our calling as Christians, we can avoid these dissensions that so easily tear the Christian body apart.
What brings unity to our churches? How can we come together in the midst of so many varying opinions and countless opportunities to disagree with one another? In this sermon, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones argues from Ephesians that when believers focus on Jesus Christ, the head of the church, unity is preserved. How is this done? First, by focusing on the uniqueness of Jesus—there is only one Lord. He is the only one like Him. He makes Christianity what it is, for without Christ, the core of Christian belief would be gone. In this sense, The Doctor says, there is an intolerant aspect to Christianity. He goes on to suggest that those who have not seen this have not seen the true faith. Christ is central to the church because disagreements about Him are disagreements about core doctrines, which not only cause division, but in some cases also serve as evidence that certain people are outside of Christ. All we need regarding our salvation and how to be a part of the church is wrapped up in Jesus. Lloyd-Jones then asks, “What is our relationship to Him?” Listen as The Doctor explains how Christ alone is the object around which the church can be united.
From Ephesians 4:5, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones argues that the unifying faith of Christianity is not unity of doctrine, first and foremost, but it is a unity of faith in Christ. This is the faith that justifies all who are truly Christians. In this we see the saving work of Christ and the application of that work to the hearts and minds of believers by the Holy Spirit. For this reason, the great doctrine of justification by faith alone is at the very heart of the Gospel and Christianity. It is this doctrine that the Reformers fought for, and it is this doctrine that is essential to any true understanding of the Gospel. This is why it is so vital that the Church of our day guards against all heresies that would add anything to the Gospel. For anyone who tries to add anything to faith detracts from God’s glory as the only Savior and hope for fallen mankind. It detracts from the work of Christ on the cross to say that fallen men must do something in addition to the Gospel. To reject justification by faith is to reject the saving Gospel and to reject true Christianity as found in God’s Word.
How important is baptism? What connection does it have to the unity within the church? At a first glance, it might seem odd that Paul would include it as a point of unity. Why is this? With Ephesians 4:5, Martyn Lloyd-Jones argues that a shared view of baptism is a result of unity around Christ. He then presents various views of baptism and demonstrates from Scripture why Christians must view baptism as a representation of something, not as an act that accomplishes salvation in and of itself! The danger that many people throughout the centuries have run into, he says, is that they take acts like baptism and teach that they are necessary for salvation. However, Scripture clearly teaches that this is not the case. It is a representation, and Dr. Lloyd-Jones says that it brings unity, because biblically correct baptism is into one name only, that of the Lord Jesus Christ. But what does it mean to be “baptized into Christ,” as Paul writes elsewhere? Importantly, Dr. Lloyd-Jones says, it signifies and proclaims that we no longer identify with the world— instead, we are one with Christ. This is what brings unity to the church, and it does so because all who have been baptized according to Scripture are the Lord’s people!