Suffering - as Christs Prisoner
A Sermon on Ephesians 3:1
The Mystery of the Gospel Revealed
For this reason I, Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus on behalf of you Gentiles— (ESV)
What is worth giving your life for? Is there even something worth it? These, and more, are questions that concern the depth of our existence. As Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones contends, Paul is giving us the answer—Jesus is worth it. After 27 sermons on Ephesians 2, Dr. Lloyd-Jones turns his attention to the Ephesians 3:1, and addresses the question of suffering. First, he notes, Paul was concerned because he knew his suffering would trouble the Ephesians. Why would they be troubled? Because suffering is confusing. However, he also gives the Ephesians the principles by which to process his suffering and theirs. According to Dr. Lloyd-Jones, Paul examined his situation in light of the Gospel, Jesus, and his salvation, and came to several pivotal conclusions. First, suffering is worth rejoicing in. He knows that he is following in the footsteps of Christ. Also, Paul states that he is “Christ’s prisoner,” implying that he is suffering on behalf of Jesus. He was there because he preached the Gospel, and specifically, he preached it to the Gentiles. Also, interestingly, Paul argues that his suffering should be an encouragement to the Ephesians (verse 13). Dr. Lloyd-Jones notes that Paul said this because he knew that his suffering would encourage them as to the truthfulness of the Gospel.