The end of Ephesians tells us we’re in the fight of our lives; a fight so fierce that no unaided Christian can prevail. But God has provided a sure defense through the shielding blood of Christ. Against such divine armor no attack can succeed. We take our battle stations by faith, resting in the strength of the One who forever triumphed on the cross.
How can you serve the Lord in a miserable situation? Whether in bondage to a slave master, an overbearing boss, or a difficult home circumstance, we find true freedom only in the One who forsook His freedom for us. Becoming Christ’s slave is actually the most liberating thing there is as we discover the hope, purpose, and power of serving the Master who set us free.
After an extended period of ministry in Galilee, Luke tells us that ‘As the time approached for him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem.’ This is an important change in Luke’s narrative, and there are a number of important teachings packed into this event.
Parents and children have experienced tension since the very first parents and children! Sin disrupts all of our relationships, especially among those with whom we share close quarters. Thankfully, our perfectly wise Father is in the process of redeeming family relations through the grace of His perfectly obedient Son, Jesus Christ.
Most marital advice to men tends to either be dominated by guilt or diluted by man-centered tips and tactics. But God provides a better way in Ephesians 5. Believing husbands may reflect the grace of the selfless Savior to whom they have been joined by faith. Indeed, all Christians may find grace to serve others though the ultimate Bridegroom, Jesus Christ.
For many people, the command for wives to submit to their husbands as to the Lord seems highly problematic. Many wives view it as demeaning. Many husbands view it as excuse to be demeaning. Many single people view it as irrelevant to them. Many others are unsure of what it looks like in practice or why it’s so important. But God shows us in His word how all of our earthly relationships offer an excellent opportunity to reflect the glory of our selfless Savior as we grow together in His grace. In addition to offering practical teaching on marriage, Ephesians 5 gives us deeper insight into the love of Christ for His Church.
During Jesus’ earthly ministry there was a lot of confusion about who he was. Not only did his opponents misunderstand him, but also those closest to him – his very own disciples – often misunderstood him and failed to believe him. Luke’s gospel will help us to be disciples who know Jesus aright and know him well.
Life is a minefield of bad decisions waiting to happen. Even staying where we are offers no protection but only a different set of dangers. Our only hope for life and godliness is to follow the Savior who has gone before us in perfect wisdom and who guides our steps as we look to Him for grace.
Paul didn’t hide the hard truth that we don’t merely live in a darkened world, or do darkened things, but that we are darkened people due to the curse of the fall. Our hearts are blackened as a result of Adam’s sin. The good news is that Jesus, the light of the world, can not only rescue us from our former life of darkness, but enable us to live as His radiant disciples in a world desperately in need of His grace.