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Thursday Bible Study - Week 2


Forum: Christian Parenting

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  #1  
August 19th, 2010, 07:05 AM
Abba's Avatar Veteran
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Ephesians 2

1 And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins,

2 in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience,

3 among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.

4 But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,

5 even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),

6 and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,

7 that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,

9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.

10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

11 Therefore remember that you, once Gentiles in the flesh—who are called Uncircumcision by what is called the Circumcision made in the flesh by hands—

12 that at that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.

13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

14 For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation,

15 having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace,

16 and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity.

17 And He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who were near.

18 For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father.

19 Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God,

20 having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone,

21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord,

22 in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.
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  #2  
August 19th, 2010, 11:12 PM
carsonsmom26's Avatar Super Mommy
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14 For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation,

15 having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace,


I don't know what stood out with you, but this is what stood out for me! Can someone help me with this part? Just an explanation so that I may grasp it!
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  #3  
August 20th, 2010, 11:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carsonsmom26 View Post
14 For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation,

15 having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace,


I don't know what stood out with you, but this is what stood out for me! Can someone help me with this part? Just an explanation so that I may grasp it!

I think this goes back beginning in verse 11-13 with the idea that Gentiles and Jews are both included in the church.

So when he says "made both one" and "broken down the middle wall of separation" he is referring to the delineation between the Jew and the non-Jew that God established when He "chose" the nation of Israel as His special people in order to bring Jesus into the world.

Paul says Jesus abolished the enmity (or strife) which is the Old Testament ("law of commandments contained in ordinances")

"one new man from two" referring to how men of all nations (two: Jew and Gentile) are united in Christ (one).

Verse 18 says we "both have access" (Jews and Gentiles)
Vs. 19 says "you are no longer strangers and foreigners" speaking to the Gentiles, "but fellow citizens."

I think this is fascinating. Imagine at the time how this would have shaken both of their cultures - Jews and Gentiles now calling each other brother and sister? Sharing meals and worshiping together?

This is the power of the gospel!

Not only would this be joyous for the Gentiles to hear, but also a reminder to the Jews that God's mercy is what saves us - not the adherence to the Old Law which they had grown up following.

Does that correlate?

Last edited by Abba; August 20th, 2010 at 12:18 PM.
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  #4  
August 20th, 2010, 12:19 PM
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So I'm going to try to sum up the first two chapters. Please let me know if I missed any main points.

Chapter 1:

God has "... has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ." vs. 3

called us... "in order that we ... might be for the praise of his glory." vs 12

The purpose is "God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church". vs 22

Chapter 2:

"...because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ" vs 4-5

We were .."created in Christ Jesus to do good works" vs 10

This applies to Jews and Gentiles vs 11-18

And then I think another grand conclusion similar to the end of Chapter 1: Jews and Gentiles created for good works, called to glorify Him, "are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit."

I think this again like chapter 1 concludes with an emphasis on the church which I find intriguing since Paul isn't saying much about the church (yet), but more about our purpose (calling).
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  #5  
August 20th, 2010, 09:35 PM
Mattiez's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Ok on to week 2.
I agree with Abba's explanation of vs. 14 and 15. talking about both the Jews and the gentiles.

This chapter seems to be a very familiar one. A couple things that did stand out for me was in vs.

20 having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone,

21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord,

First I like that Paul points out that this "new faith" of theirs and the preaching of Jesus is based on both the apostles, the new leaders of the faith and the prophets, the old leaders of the faith. That the two combine to form a complete "faith"
I like the working of "GROWS into a holy temple in the Lord". I will have to get some different translations out and see what terms they use. To me this implies an ongoing process, one that has not come to it's completion but continuing.

Here is another point to ponder. In vs.15 having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace,

Is this vs. saying that Jesus came to abolish the law of commandments? To do away with the laws as the Jewish people knew them? What are your thoughts on this?

May the Lord grant us knowledge and wisdom
Mattiez
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  #6  
August 23rd, 2010, 11:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mattiez View Post

Here is another point to ponder. In vs.15 having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace,

Is this vs. saying that Jesus came to abolish the law of commandments? To do away with the laws as the Jewish people knew them? What are your thoughts on this?

May the Lord grant us knowledge and wisdom
Mattiez
Matthew 5:17-18 reads, "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished."

What I take this to mean it that Jesus was not just changing or replacing the Law (abolishing).
Instead, He was completing or fulfilling the law AND THE PROPHETS. This indicates that the Law and the Prophets were pointing to Christ's coming and their purpose was Christ's coming.

This wasn't just another law, it was the fulfillment of God's ultimate plan.

So in answer to your question, I believe the Old Law was done away with Jesus' death and resurrection because "everything is accomplished" at that point.

This is from Galatians 3. The whole chapter is great for addressing this question, but I only pulled the "conclusion" of the chapter. I think it ties in nicely with the earlier part of Ephesians Chapter 2 re: Jews and Gentiles being accepted into the church.

Gal 3:-23-29
Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed.

So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith.

But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian,

for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.

For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.

There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.
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