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Sermon #4043

In Christ Jesus

A Sermon on Ephesians 2:4-7


Ephesians 2:4-7 ESV KJV
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in …

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Sermon Description

What has God done for the Christian? In this sermon on Ephesians 2:4–7 titled “In Christ Jesus,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones focuses on Paul’s answer to this question. Paul is concerned that believers are clear about what God has done for them. True Christianity is what God has done to and for the believer. People can decide to be religious, to start or stop doing things, and believe that God forgives them, but that is not essentially Christianity. Some schools of thought have taught that the doctrine of union with Christ is something the Christian strives to attain. But apart from this union, a person is not a Christian. One must examine themselves and ask: is my way of thinking of myself as a Christian in terms of what I am striving to do or make of myself? The difference between the unbeliever and believer is that the believer has a new disposition bending or redirecting their faculties accordingly, affecting the whole person — mind, heart, and will. Birth is sudden and so it is with the new birth. One cannot understand or explain it fully; all one knows is that it has happened. It is a creative act of God that the apostles, and others, referred to as the “new creation.” Apart from union with Christ, this new regeneration cannot make a Christian.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The passage being discussed is Ephesians 2:4-7. The sermon focuses on what God has done for Christians according to these verses.
  2. Verse 4 says "But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us". This shows the contrast between man's sinfulness and God's mercy, love, and grace.
  3. Verse 5 says "Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)". This means God has made Christians alive spiritually even though they were once dead in sin. This is referring to regeneration or being born again.
  4. Verse 6 says "And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:". This means Christians have been raised and seated with Christ in the heavenly places. This is referring to Christians' position and standing before God.
  5. The sermon emphasizes that verses 4 through 7 show what God has done for Christians, not what Christians have done themselves. Salvation is by God's grace and power, not man's works.
  6. The sermon discusses two views of this passage: a purely objective view and a subjective, experiential view. The sermon argues for interpreting this passage both objectively and subjectively. Objectively, it refers to Christians' future resurrection and glorification. Subjectively, it refers to regeneration and Christians' present spiritual condition.
  7. The sermon focuses on what it means to be "quickened" or made alive together with Christ. This refers to regeneration or being born again. God has implanted a new principle of life in Christians. They have new spiritual life and a new spiritual disposition.
  8. The sermon argues that union with Christ is essential to understanding this passage. Christians share in all Christ has done because they are united to him. His death is their death; his life is their life. They have died to sin and the law in Christ.
  9. The sermon concludes by asking whether listeners have experienced this quickening and have spiritual life. There is no Christianity without regeneration and union with Christ.

The Book of Ephesians

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.