|Volume 23 Number 11 November 2021
Paul wrote the letter to the Ephesians partly to impress upon them the importance and the blessings of the church. He told them that the church is the body of Christ (1:22-23; 5:23-29). Redemption and forgiveness are in the church (1:7). One’s hope is in the church (1:18). True wisdom and knowledge are in the church (1:17). The church is the family of God (3:15). All spiritual blessings are in the church (1:3). Those in the church are spiritually alive instead of dead spiritually (2:1, 5).
In the last half of Ephesians 2, Paul wrote about the peace that is in the church. There are two different types of peace. In verses 11-15, he discussed peace between Gentiles and Jews. In verse 14, the apostle mentioned the “middle wall of partition” (KJV) or “separation” (NKJV). Jesus Christ broke down the partition between Jews and Gentiles who are in the church. In verse 15, Paul told the Ephesians that the Old Law (Mosaic Law) was that partition. God gave the Mosaic Law to the Jews. The Jews were God’s chosen people. Jews had come to think of themselves as higher than Gentiles. They had come to think of Gentiles as spiritual dogs. The dog was not regarded highly in Palestine. However, now Jews and Gentiles are at peace with each other. Christians are all equal in Christ. There is no animosity or hatred among Christians.
Formerly, a Gentile could come to God through the Mosaic Law. Now, though, both Jews and Gentiles must come to God through the Law of Christ. They are now equal in that both must come to the New Law. Under the Mosaic Law, Jews were born into Judaism. A Jew did not have to come to that Law.
In Ephesians 2:16, the apostle Paul penned that both Gentiles and Jews are now reconciled to God in one body – the church. Both have peace with God through Christ. This is the second peace. Those outside of the church have no peace with God. Instead, they have enmity. God now offers peace to everyone. Only through Christ does one have access to the Father (2:18). In 2 Peter 3:14, the apostle Peter urged his readers to be diligent to be found in peace with God. The Judgment is the context of that message. Everyone needs to make sure they are at peace with God.
Study your Bible. Learn how to be at peace with man and with God. If any of this is hard to understand, ask an adult to help you.
I Saw the Light and Was Glad
…Do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance [patience, KJV], so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise. (Hebrews 10:35-36 NKJV)
This morning, I was driving east as the sunlight was beginning to shine over the ridge. The spectacle was beautiful. The sun was at the perfect angle to send rays of light across the sky in streams while still being below the horizon in other areas. Our Father’s creation is magnificent. Habakkuk prophesied about God as if His presence were the sun itself.
God came from Teman, The Holy One from Mount Paran. Selah His glory covered the heavens, And the earth was full of His praise. His brightness was like the light; He had rays flashing from His hand, And there His power was hidden. (Habakkuk 3:3-4)
When we see the sun rays on a calm, cool morning, we know Who exists and Who reigns supreme over the day and the night.
The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament shows His handiwork. Day unto day utters speech, And night unto night reveals knowledge. There is no speech nor language Where their voice is not heard. Their line has gone out through all the earth, And their words to the end of the world. In them He has set a tabernacle for the sun, Which is like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, And rejoices like a strong man to run its race. Its rising is from one end of heaven, And its circuit to the other end; And there is nothing hidden from its heat. (Psalm 19:1-6)
As a child of God serving Him faithfully, take comfort each new day as God continues to send sunshine and rain on the just and on the unjust. “That you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” (Matthew 5:45).