The Everlasting Covenant
A Sermon on Ephesians 1:3
3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ,
3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
The words of Scripture allow a glimpse into the eternal plan of the Trinity. Theologians have called this the Covenant of Redemption where humanity can be redeemed from their sin and reconciled to God. In this sermon on Ephesians 1:3 titled “The Everlasting Covenant,” this central theme of Ephesians comes alive as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones warns, laments, and challenges Christians to understand the great theme of redemption. The believer’s greatest need is to understand doctrine. What is at stake is not intellectual curiosity, but worship. The truth about redemption, argues Dr. Lloyd-Jones, leads to adoration, worship, and praise. When one dwells upon the redemptive work of each person, they grow in their worship of God. When a Christian understands more, the more worship they experience. For the Christian, worship is always Trinitarian. One must not only praise the Father, but also the Son and the Holy Spirit. The Christian must not stop at worshiping only the Son, but also the Father and the Holy Spirit. They cannot focus exclusively on the Holy Spirit to the neglect of the Father and Son but must adore the blessed Trinity.
- The realization of the truth concerning our redemption always leads to prayer.
- Praise and thanksgiving are the most striking characteristics of the Christian life.
- The measure of our growth in grace is the place that the ascription of praise unto God and of adoration has in our life.
- We must examine ourselves to see how prominent the element of praise and thanksgiving is in our life.
- The Christian position is always trinitarian, and Christian worship must be trinitarian.
- We must be careful that the three persons of the Trinity come in the order in which they always do in Scripture: the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit.
- God is to be praised because he is who and what he is—he is blessed. The ultimate character of God is blessedness.
- God is also to be praised because he has blessed us.
- God is to be praised because of the way in which he has blessed us. The great message of Ephesians 1:3 is the planning of our salvation.
- There was a great eternal council held between the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit before the foundation of the world.
- The three persons took up their various positions and tasks: the Father plans, the Son puts the plan into operation, and the Holy Spirit applies it.
- What really happened in that eternal council was that a great covenant, the covenant of grace, was drawn up.
- The covenant was that the Son volunteered to make himself responsible for fallen men. The Father promised forgiveness, reconciliation, restoration, new life, and a new nature to all who were covered by the Son.
- The covenant with Abraham, Moses, and Noah were subsidiary to this greater covenant with the Son.
- The law given to Moses does not disannul the covenant made with Abraham, which is a statement of the still more fundamental covenant made with the Son in eternity.
- God is called "the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ" to teach us that all blessings come to us in and through Christ because of the covenant made between the Father and the Son before the foundation of the world.
- We must understand these doctrines in order to truly praise and worship God. Mere phrases and liturgies are not enough.
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.