1. A Mystery Revealed.
a) Before Jesus, the world was separated from God.
b) Now, all who believe are made into a new family!
c) The purpose of the church is to glorify God in all creation by accomplishing His mission.
2. A Functional Family.
a) Jesus has a specific plan for families and for the church.
b) God calls the church to preserve and protect the truth.
Questions for further thought or discussion.
- Read Ephesians 2:18-3:12 . What is the “mystery” that Paul reveals to the Ephesians?
- What does he mean in Ephesians 3:9 , when he says he was called to bring to light the “plan of the mystery”?
- Read 1 Timothy 3:14-15 . In your observation, how does the church function like a household or a family? How does it not function like a family?
- How can we know how Christians ought to behave as members of the church family?
- If the church is the centerpiece for Christ’s plan for the world, what are the implications for Christians?
Lord, as a member of your church family, help me to participate wholeheartedly. Help me to embrace your mission and live according to your plan.
18 For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. 19 So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. 22 In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.
1 For this reason I, Paul, a prisoner for Christ Jesus on behalf of you Gentiles— 2 assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God’s grace that was given to me for you, 3 how the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly. 4 When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit. 6 This mystery is that the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.
7 Of this gospel I was made a minister according to the gift of God’s grace, which was given me by the working of his power. 8 To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9 and to bring to light for everyone what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God who created all things, 10 so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. 11 This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12 in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him.
14 I hope to come to you soon, but I am writing these things to you so that, 15 if I delay, you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, a pillar and buttress of the truth.