11In Him we also have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things in accordance with the plan of His will,
11In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:
Political peace and social unity is something often heard about in the media and how communities need to strive to embrace unity and lay down their tribal identities that divide people. How might Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones respond to this kind of plea? More importantly, how does the apostle Paul talk about unity? In this sermon on Ephesians 1:11 titled “We…Ye Also,” Dr. Lloyd-Jones expounds on the great themes of unity, harmony, and peace in the letter to the Ephesians. In the church, there is no nationalistic boasting from the Jews nor philosophical snobbery from the Greeks for they are all one in Christ. The apostle Paul, who first boasted in his flesh as a Hebrew of Hebrews, now boasts that he is an apostle to the Gentiles. How did this come about? It comes about from God’s grand purpose of reuniting all things together in Christ. It is only when one looks to their inheritance as Christians can true peace and true unity be realized. Only by setting affection upon the spiritual inheritance in Christ can true reconciliation take place. The world does not know this or understand this unity. Hear Dr. Lloyd-Jones speak to this important topic that has implications for lives today.
- The sermon begins by introducing Ephesians 1:11-14 as the passage that will be examined. The sermon notes that this passage is part of one long sentence in Ephesians that begins in verse 3.
- The sermon highlights how Paul's writing style in this passage is marked by elaboration and repeating ideas. The sermon compares this passage to an overture in an opera that introduces key themes.
- The sermon identifies the key theme of this passage and Ephesians as a whole - that God is restoring harmony and unity through bringing Jews and Gentiles together as Christians.
The sermon outlines 5 main points Paul makes about Christianity in this passage:
Christians are "in Christ" - in a new relationship with Christ. This is the only way for unity.
- There are blessings and an inheritance for those in Christ. Christians share in this inheritance together.
- Paul explains how people enter into these blessings - through God's will and purpose.
- The Holy Spirit acts as a seal and guarantee of these blessings.
The ultimate purpose is for God's glory.
The sermon focuses on the first point - that Christians are reconciled in their new relationship to Christ. This is the only way to overcome divisions. Mere teachings or ethics are not enough. Regeneration is needed.
- The sermon examines Paul's statement that "in Christ we have obtained an inheritance." It argues this means Christians have become inheritors and gained a share in God's plan. Christians are fellow heirs with each other and with Christ.
- The sermon describes the Christian's inheritance - God's restoration of harmony, being with Christ, reigning with Christ, a new heaven and new earth. Christians can look forward to this and not be overly focused on this world.
- The sermon concludes by asking if we have a share in this inheritance through being in 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.