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The Benediction Of Grace

Ephesians 6:21-24 • May 18, 2022 • w1364

Pastor John Miller concludes our study in the book of Ephesians with a message through Ephesians 6:21-24 titled, “The Benediction Of Grace.”

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Pastor John Miller

May 18, 2022

Sermon Scripture Reference

I want to read Ephesians 6:21-24, follow with me in your Bibles. Paul says, “But that ye also may know my affairs, and how I do, Tychicus, a beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord, shall make known to you all things: 22 Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that ye might know our affairs, and that he might comfort your hearts. 23 Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 24 Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Amen.”

A.T. Pierson said that Paul called the Ephesians, “Paul’s Third Heaven Epistle.” I love that—being in the third Heaven where the presence of God is, and that’s so true. I want you to look at Ephesians 1 for just a moment and you’ll see in what’s called the key verse and theme of the book. We’re going to survey up to where we start tonight, so buckle your seatbelts. If you can get you pen and paper ready, I’m going to outline the whole book of Ephesians for you tonight. I want you to look at verse 3. Paul said, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings,” in the Greek that would actually read, ‘all the blessings of the Spirit,’ in heavenly places in Christ.” Praise be to God who has blessed us with all the blessings of the Spirit in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus. I would call that, and so would many other Bible teachers, the theme and the central key text of the book of Ephesians. The book of Ephesians is the believer’s riches in Christ.

Because we went so in depth for the last seven or eight weeks on the armor of God, we stopped short of finishing up this closing benediction in Ephesians 6. We don’t have a whole lot of text there to cover, it’s packed with some beautiful truth, but what I want to do since the series was so lengthy, we’ve been in it for so many months, I want to go back to Ephesians 1 and give you kind of an outline.

Outlines can change based on your ideas or approach, the outline of the book is not given by inspiration of God by any means, if you read twenty commentaries, you get twenty different variations to the outlines, but a lot of Bible scholars, and I concur, break Ephesians up in two sections. This is quite common with the Pauline epistles. First, they have a doctrinal section. When I say ‘first have,’ always consistently Paul starts with doctrine. Following doctrine, and in logical order, is what we call duty. There are the principles and the practice, or the doctrine and the duty. The first section of the book, Ephesians 1-3, are doctrine. Let me outline it in three sections, which is another approach that we have taken; that is, we have in this book of Ephesians: first, our wealth in Christ; then, our walk in Christ; and thirdly, our warfare in Christ. That’s what I love about the book of Ephesians, it’s so comprehensive and so complete.

The book of Ephesians is one of Paul’s prison epistles, and this is when Paul was in prison under house arrest in Rome. It’s what’s called his first imprisonment. During that time he penned Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon. I don’t know any Christian that studied their Bible that doesn’t love Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon as well. But Philippians, Colossians, and Ephesians are such marvelous books of the Bible, and to think that Paul penned them with chains on his wrists as he was under arrest awaiting trial before Cesar Nero.

Let me give you kind of a survey up to where we begin tonight, starting all the way back in Ephesians 1. This is not as detailed as it could be, because I want to move through it and there’s a lot of choice passages that I’m not going to touch on or comment, but we’re going to look at the book of Ephesians from thirty thousand feet as we fly over this epistle. The first section includes chapters 1-3, our wealth in Christ. What Paul does in this section is actually tells us in Ephesians 1:4-6, that we have blessings from God the Father; in verses 7-12, we have blessings from God the Son; in verses 13-14 we have blessings from the Holy Spirit. I don’t mind saying this is one of my favorite sections of the entire Word of God, so I’m not going to get bogged down, but I want to go back and just touch on them with you for just a moment.

Let’s read verses 4-6. Paul says, “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love,” again, remember in verse 3, He “…hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings,” blessings of the Spirit, “in heavenly places in Christ,” so he begins to list those blessings for us. First of all, God the Father has chosen us. Then, notice verse 5, “Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,” and notice each one of these sections ends with the statement, “To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.” Again, we could spend more than a week on just this first section, but let me mention the three blessings. First of all, verse 4, He’s chosen us. That’s the doctrine of election. When did He choose us? “…before the foundation of the world.” You, as a believer tonight, have been chosen by God.

Secondly, He has adopted us, verse 5, I love it, “Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children.” When you become a Christian, you’re born into God’s family through regeneration; but you’re also adopted, which means the moment you are saved, you are given a position as a full adult son or daughter in Christ. You know, sometimes children inherit from their parents, but if they’re adolescents, they have to wait until age 18 or maturity to be able to inherit their wealth. God designed that when we were born into His family, we didn’t have to wait for us to mature to get our inheritance because He also adopted us, which means that we are placed as adult sons and daughters and can begin to enjoy the benefits of being a child of God.

Thirdly, verse 6, He has accepted us, and that’s a beautiful doctrine as well. We’ve been chosen, we’ve been adopted, and we have been accepted. Notice in verse 6 he says, “To the praise of the glory of his grace,” or some have ‘to the praise of his glorious grace,’ “wherein he hath made us,” here it is, “accepted in the beloved,” so we’re accepted, not for our goodness or our righteousness, but that imputed righteousness of Christ. Christ is our standing. Christ is our salvation. Christ is our sanctification. We are robed in His righteousness, thus we are made accepted by God.

Then, Paul lists the blessings from the Son in verses 7-12, “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace; 8 Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence; 9 Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself: 10 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: 11 In 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,” and then he closes, verse 12, “That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.”

Already, I’m kind of getting stuck here because these verses are so marvelous, but let me mention the four blessings that come to us in Christ through God the Son: He’s redeemed us, verse 7, write that down; again, in verse 7, He’s forgiven us, that is, forgiven all our sins; in verses 8-10, He has given us wisdom, “Having made known unto us the mystery of his will,” so God has revealed to us; and notice in verses 11-12, He has given us an inheritance, or we have become His inheritance as we looked at that.

Just a little footnote, this is kind of an advertisement for our website, if you are just kind of new tonight or here for the first time or you weren’t here for Ephesians 1 or you haven’t gone through Ephesians with us, all the sermons and messages that we did all the way through Ephesians are on our website. All you have to do is click a button, no cost to you, and you can listen to those messages. You can dig deep in the Word, take notes, and they’re all there available.

I really urge you to go back, especially in this first section of Ephesians 1, and spend the time digging into these doctrines that we are blessed by God the Father, God the Son, and, thirdly, verses 13-14, he lists the blessings that come to us from God the Holy Spirit, “In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed,” that’s faith, “ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,” referring to the Holy Spirit, “Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.” Again, there is that point, “…unto the praise of his glory,” of His grace. These are two blessings from the Holy Spirit. This is not exhaustive by any means. In your salvation there are many blessings that come from the Holy Spirit, but in verse 13, He sealed us; in verse 14, He gave us His Spirit as a downpayment, He is “the earnest of our inheritance.”

We call the downpayment on a house ‘earnest money,’ we’re going to finish the transaction, so we give a downpayment and then we give a lot of money—for a lot of years, for the rest of our lives. It’s amazing how long you can pay on a mortgage for a house, and just when the house gets paid for, you die and go to Heaven. I’m kidding, but I’m not kidding. When you get saved, the Holy Spirit seals you. I want to make a point: All these blessings are true of every Christian—all of them, all Christians—whether you feel it, “Oooo, I feel it!” or not. They’re true of you. It’s up for you to believe God’s Word. If you’re in Christ, you’re chosen, you’re adopted, you’re forgiven, you’re accepted, you are sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise. Later on in Ephesians, he said that sealing lasts until the day of redemption.

There are two central concepts to the sealing of the Holy Spirit. The first one is ownership. It’s a mark of ownership—you belong to God. When God gives you the Holy Spirit, His Spirit bears witness with your spirit that you’re the children of God. The second one is security. Now, if you don’t believe me, do your own homework. You might say, “Oh, you’re just spouting off. You don’t know what you’re talking about.” Well, do your own homework. It’s identification, you belong to Him, and it’s security. Remember when Jesus died and they put Him in the tomb and they sealed it? The Roman seal? That was security—making sure no one broke that seal. You know, when you send a letter and you send it with a seal, you don’t want anyone to break it except for the recipient of that letter? Well, God is the sender, and God is the recipient. We’re sealed, and that sealing goes until the day of redemption. Of all the many references in the Bible that support the concept that once you’ve been born again, you cannot be lost, in my book, this is one of the most clear and powerful references to the security of the believer, and I don’t know how anyone can get around this.

Every Christian, the moment they’re saved…there’s no such thing as ‘the sealed’ and ‘the unsealed.’ There’s no such thing as those who are adopted and aren’t adopted. All of them are true of people that are in Christ. Being ‘in Christ’ is what brings you those blessings which happens when you, by faith, believe and trust in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior and you’re born again—you’re indwelt by the Spirit, and you’re sealed unto the day of redemption. Those are the blessings from God the Father. That’s just a sampling of the first three chapters that are the blessings that are ours in Christ.

In Ephesians 2, Paul talks about the oneness in the body, Jew and Gentile, the middle wall of partition broken down and on and on. The second section runs from Ephesians 4-6:9, and we won’t spend as much time on this section. Ephesians 4-6:9, just look at it real quickly, Ephesians 4:1. This is the walk in Christ. First, we have our wealth in Christ, now, knowing what we have, we are to walk it out in our Christian life, verse 1, “I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord,” as I said, this is one of his prison epistles, “beseech you,” beg you, “that ye walk worthy,” there it is, “of the vocation wherewith ye are called.” From Ephesians 4-6:9, it’s all about how you walk, and it always follows this logical order: you need to know your wealth before you can have your walk. A lot of times pastors will preach the walk section without the wealth section, and they’ll be exhorting the people in the pew to live a good Christian life, but they don’t know what a Christian is, they don’t know what they have, they don’t know their position in Christ. You can’t live what you don’t know, so first the doctrine, then the duty. It has to come in that order.

We walk first of all in unity, Ephesians 4:1-16, I want you to notice verses 11-13, “And he gave some…evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ; 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith,” there it is, “and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ,” so he wants us to walk in unity, built up in the body of Christ.

Secondly, we walk in purity, Ephesians 4:17-5:17. Notice Ephesians 4:17, “This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk,” there’s the theme, “not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind.” He first tells us how not to walk, “…as other Gentiles,” and that concept of ‘Gentiles’ isn’t just talking racially or ethically, it’s talking about unbelievers. It’s talking about non-Christians. The term ‘Gentile’ can sometimes be used for unbelievers, heathens, so you’re not to live like them. When he says that we should walk, in verse 1, “…worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called,” it means to weigh the same as. We want to bring our practice up to our position in Christ.

Thirdly, we walk in harmony, Ephesians 5:18-6:9. I want to point out just a couple of verses in Ephesians 5:18, “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess,” or debauchery, “but be filled with the Spirit,” and this is a reference to the Holy Spirit, and it’s a command to be filled. In the Greek it’s actually all inclusive, every one of us, and it’s in the present tense, ‘be being filled,’ be constantly, continually being filled. Again, in the Greek it’s in what’s called the passive voice which means that we allow the Spirit to fill us by surrendering to His control. “And be not drunk with wine,” that’s the contrast, “but be filled with the Spirit; 19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; 20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; 21 Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.”

This is the walk in harmony. It starts with being filled with the Spirit. We looked at this in great depth. Again, go to the website and you can read about wives submit to your husbands, husbands love your wives, children obey your parents, parents provoke not your children to wrath, servants obey your masters, masters give unto your servants, that’s just, right, and equal. It’s all about being filled with the Holy Spirit and walking in harmony in the home and in the workplace. It’s so very important as it runs all the way down to Ephesians 6:9.

The last section, bringing us up to our text, is Ephesians 6:10-12. We saw that we are to walk in victory or our warfare in Christ, so we have our wealth in Christ, our walk in Christ, and now we have our warfare in Christ, Ephesians 6:10-20. We just finished that and spent many weeks in that in depth, but peek again in verse 10. This will be our last reference to these verses. “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. 11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil,” his schemes, his methods. “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” The devil is wily, he has methods, he’s powerful, and he’s also wicked, verse 12. We, as believers, are in a spiritual battle, and the only way to stand is in the power of His might. We close with verses 18-20, that is, the way we put the armor on, the way we’re victorious in battle is by getting on our knees and praying to God. Amen? The only way to be strong in His power and His might is to get on your knees, to look to God, and ask Him for strength.

I remember as a young Christian, that I felt so overwhelmed in trying to live the Christian life. I had been a Christian for just a few months and I stumbled and fell back into some of my old Gentile ways. I came home just broken and said, “Lord, I can’t do it. I can’t live the Christian life unless You do it for me, unless You do it in me, unless You do it through me.” That was a turning point for me. I was willing to take up my cross, die to myself, and follow Jesus Christ. Part of that, practically, by the way, meant breaking away from my old crowd. One of the reasons I had fallen into my old ways was because I was hanging out with my old friends. It’s easy to fall when you’re hanging out with Gentiles—you’ll be speaking like them, acting like them, and living like them. Many times you have to sever that relationship. It doesn’t mean you don’t love them, it doesn’t mean you don’t want to reach them, but what fellowship hath light with darkness? What communion hath Christ with Satan? The Word says, “Wherefore come out from among them…touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.” I lost all my ‘sin buddies,’ but I became friends with all the saints of God and the Lord brought new believers into my life. What a blessing that was!

Now, we come to the closing section, Paul’s closing benediction of grace, verses 21-24, we’ve already read. It has two parts. First of all, it has a few parting words of explanation, verses 21-22, and then has a closing benediction; so some closing explanation about the letter and what’s going on, Tychicus being sent and why, and then it has a closing benediction. First of all, verses 21-22, let’s go back and read it, he says, “But that ye also may know my affairs,” so I wrote this letter to you in Ephesus; I’m in Rome in chains. He wasn’t really in prison. It’s called his prison epistle, he was a prisoner, but he actually rented his own hired house. He was under house arrest literally, which meant people could come and hang out with him, have meals with him, and talk with him; but he had Roman guards chained to him in his own house, which the Lord provided to give him freedom to be able to pen these marvelous letters. Had Paul not been arrested and thrown in jail, he may never have penned Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon; so sorry about that, Paul, I’m glad you got arrested. I’m kind of glad he spent some time in prison for our sake so these letters are available for us today. Paul says, “But that ye also may know my affairs,” I wanted you to know my affairs, so I’m sending Tychicus.

Notice what he says about Tychicus, then we’ll come back to it in a second. He says he’s “…a beloved brother,” that’s good, “and faithful minister,” that’s good, “in the Lord,” again, that’s what makes him a brother, “shall make known to you all things, 22 Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that ye might know our affairs, and that he might comfort your hearts.” This is such a touching, practical little aspect to this letter. Paul starts in all this deep theological truth in Ephesians 1, and when he comes to the end of the letter he says, “Oh, by the way, I’m sending Tychicus to you so that I can know how you’re doing, he’ll bring word back to me, and then he’ll also bring word to you on how we’re doing.”

If you have time, get your Concordance out and look up Tychicus and all the references to him. There’s a whole series of references to him. He’s one of the traveling companions of Paul, and he’s from somewhere in Asia. He was with Paul when Paul went to Ephesus when there was the whole riotings with Paul and the shipwreck. He traveled with Paul. He was with him in thick and thin, in hard times and in good times. When you’re in chains and under house arrest and in jail, wouldn’t you like your friends to come visit you? Tychicus is by his side again, “A friend loveth at all times,” and this is such a touching thought that even Paul the Apostle appreciated, valued, and was thankful for Christian friends and Christian fellowship. Tychicus was a friend of Paul and traveled with Paul. He was a missionary for Paul.

It’s believed, and I think rightfully so, that Tychicus, verse 21, was the bearer of this epistle. They didn’t have mail systems in those days, and can you imagine Paul thinking of being able to e-mail, text, call, or FaceTime with someone? I remember when they first started having FaceTime on a phone. I remember having…you old folks out there, remember when we had cordless phones? I remember standing in my front yard and thought, This is amazing! I’m out in the front yard and there’s no cord and I’m talking. The phone was about six foot by four, but I’m on the phone talking, and how much technology has increased.

Paul would have to send someone to go collect an offering or bring a letter or do some message, so Tychicus was his messenger who carried the letter. He also carried Colossians, which is a sister epistle, Philippians, and Philemon. This is all carried by Tychicus. Notice what he calls him, “…a beloved brother,” that’s such a precious title. How sweet and how tight the bond are Christian brothers and sisters and the fellowship we have in Christ. This is a couple of men who had kindred spirits. They were soul mates, and he says, “…and a faithful minister.” What a great epitaph to have maybe put on your tombstone: Beloved brother, faithful minister. What a blessing Tychicus was, and when we get to Heaven, we can shake his hand and meet this man. And he “…shall make known to you all things.”

As I pointed out, verse 22, it’s also “…for the same purpose, that ye might know our affairs,” how we’re doing, “and that he might comfort your hearts.” Take this application with you, that is, we need beloved friends to fellowship with in the Lord. Quite often, when someone comes to me for counseling and they’re going through a difficult time, I will ask them, “Do you have any Christian friends?” You can’t believe how often they’ll say, “No.” “You don’t have any Christian friends?” “I don’t have any Christian friends.” If you have Christian family, thank God! If you have Christian friends, and sometimes your friends are closer than your family because they are spiritual family, thank God! Pour into them. Develop them. You can’t live the Christian life alone. You can’t walk alone. You need to build up one another, pray for one another, wash one another’s feet, encourage one another. When you’re sick, you need someone to pray for you. You need someone to talk to. Bear one another’s burdens.

I’m glad you’re here on Wednesday night and you’re listening to a monologue, the teaching of the Bible, but get involved in a smaller group or hang out after church is over and pray with people, reach out to others. I’m encouraging you tonight, when we finish in just a moment, to not just go running out the door. Sometimes when service is over, it looks like rats fleeing a sinking ship, “Thank God, we’re free at last!” It’s almost like people are going to hold up a sign: Set the captives free! Linger. Fellowship. There are those little pockets, so many times on Wednesday and Sundays, I mean we have to kick them out to shut the doors and turn off the lights—they just stay forever. Pray for one another. I want to encourage you tonight, too, after church, don’t just say, “Hi, how you doing,” but “Hey, let’s pray for each other. How can I pray for you? Let’s reach out to one another and build each other up.” This was a friendship in the Lord, so we need beloved friendships in the Lord.

It’s interesting that Tychicus is the only other person named personally in the book of Ephesians other than Paul and Jesus Christ. The only other people mentioned in Ephesians are Paul, Christ, and Tychicus. He was just a normal guy but was, “…a beloved brother and faithful minister,” and his name is in the book of Ephesians. I don’t know about you, but that would be a real privilege to think, My name’s in this epistle to the Ephesians for the church to read about for all of the church’s history. Can you imagine having your name in there, “…a beloved brother and faithful minister?” He was just doing what God gave him to do, and he was a blessing to Paul the Apostle. What a blessing that is!

Then, Paul closes in verses 23-24 with this benediction, and it’s marvelous, “Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ,” and look how the book of Ephesians ends, “Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Amen.” The benediction gathers up four great words that are from the epistle, and used in this epistle, that form Paul’s prayer for the believers in Ephesus and for us as well. Those four words are, notice them in the text: Peace, love, faith, and grace.

There’s nothing more revealing about us than what we wish for others who we love most. What do I mean by that? When you think about somebody you love right now, somebody you care about right now, what is it you want most for them? If the answer is: a good job, or to have a nice home, a nice car to drive, make a good salary, a college education. There’s nothing wrong with those things, but it tells us where your heart is at. But if your desire for them is that you want them to have the peace of God, you want them to have the love of God, you want them to have the faith in God, you want them to experience the grace of God, then that tells us where your heart is at.

I thought about this for my kids today, my grandkids. I’m such a stoked grandfather that when I get a video of my grandkids, I just watch it sixty times that one day. It’s just so awesome. But every time I do, I pray for my grandchildren; I pray for my children. I know my wife does the same. When I’m praying for them, it’s these same things, “Lord, that they might have peace with You and peace in their hearts, they might overflow with Your love, they might trust You and have faith, and they might experience the grace of God in their lives.” Those other things are secondary to the things we so often pray for and think about.

Let’s look at these briefly and quickly. First of all, peace, Paul’s benediction of peace, “Peace be to the brethren,” and that, of course, would also include the sistren, the family of God. How important that is. We need to have the peace, first of all, with God, Romans 5:1, where we are reconciled to God, we have peace with God; and then we have the peace of God, Philippians 4:6-7 which guards and garrisons our mind. As a believer, the minute you’re saved, you have peace with God, we’re no longer at war with Him. Then, when you live the Christian life in sanctification, you’re growing in your faith and trust, you experience the peace of God in your heart and in your life.

In Numbers 6:24-26, in the Old Testament, “The LORD bless thee, and keep thee: 25 The LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: 26 The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.” What a blessing to pray that for others that we love and care for. In Ephesians 2:14, Paul says that Christ, “…is our peace,” so we can pray that for others.

Secondly is Paul’s benediction of love. The Greek word is agape, “…and love,” verse 23. Paul used it fourteen times in the book of Ephesians. In Ephesians 1:15 he said, “…I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints.” In Romans 5:5, God has poured out His love “…in our hearts by the Holy Ghost,” Spirit. Then, in Colossians 3:14, he says, “And above all these things put on charity,” love, “which is the bond,” or belt, “of perfectness,” perfection. Jesus said in John 13:35, “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” It’s the mark of the Christian. I love what Francis Schaeffer used to call it. He used to call it the birthmark of the Christian. It’s the believer’s birthmark—love. It’s the indication that you are filled with the Spirit, Galatians 5:22. How important that is! It’s so very important.

Thirdly, notice faith, verse 23, “…and love with faith, from God the Father,” and he uses the full title here, “and the Lord Jesus Christ,” emphasizing His deity and His humanity. This word ‘faith’ appears seven times in the epistle of Ephesians. In six chapters, and seven times, Paul makes reference to faith. We can’t go back and touch them all, but we know that we are to be saved by faith, Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God,” there’s grace, we’ll get there next, “Not of works, lest any man should boast.” He wants them to grow in saving faith, and then he asks that they might also have sanctifying faith. Both of those are involved. First, faith to trust Him as Savior, and then faith to trust Him to be more like Him and be more holy as He sanctifies us by faith. It’s living to trust and rest in Christ. It’s living to trust in Him. In Isaiah 26:3, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusted in thee.” We must “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

In closing, grace, verse 24, “Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ,” I love that, “in sincerity,” so not only grace, but grace to those who love Jesus Christ, and not only love Jesus Christ, but here’s another level, “in sincerity,” which means there’s no alloy, no mixture, no fault or ulterior motives. It’s sincere—without wax, in the Greek literally. It means it’s not phony; it’s not fake. It’s the opposite of hypocrisy—it’s not duplicity, it’s sincerity. It’s truth. You really, really love Jesus.

Grace is another whole study in itself, and it’s interesting Ephesians opened in Ephesians 1:2 with “Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ,” twelve times in six chapters, Paul makes reference to the grace of God. Everything comes by God’s grace. Grace is undeserved, unmerited favor. Grace is God, in love, acting toward us in love. What a marvelous truth.

We’re saved by grace, we’re sanctified by grace, and one day we will be glorified by grace, Romans 8:30, “…whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.” It starts with grace and ends with glory. Notice verse 24, “…with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity.” So, the closing question is: Do you love the Lord Jesus Christ? And, not just love Him, but do you love Him with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, with all your mind. Do you love Him in all sincerity? You know, if you truly love Jesus with all your heart, soul, strength, and mind, everything flows together from there. It’s that simple. Everything will flow together from there.

I don’t read a lot of C.S. Lewis, but I understand that C. S. Lewis received a letter from a very young girl about twelve years old. He wrote back to this young 12-year-old girl, and one part of his return letter to her says, and I don’t remember what her name was but, “If you love Jesus with all your heart and all your strength, nothing can go wrong with you.” This great intellect, C.S. Lewis, writing to this 12-year-old girl, “If you love Jesus with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, nothing can go wrong.” It doesn’t mean you won’t have problems. It doesn’t mean life won’t be difficult, but nothing will go wrong—it’ll all be well with you. Let’s pray.

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About Pastor John Miller

Pastor John Miller is the Senior Pastor of Revival Christian Fellowship in Menifee, California. He began his pastoral ministry in 1973 by leading a Bible study of six people. God eventually grew that study into Calvary Chapel of San Bernardino, and after pastoring there for 39 years, Pastor John became the Senior Pastor of Revival in June of 2012. Learn more about Pastor John

Sermon Summary

Pastor John Miller concludes our study in the book of Ephesians with a message through Ephesians 6:21-24 titled, “The Benediction Of Grace.”

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Pastor John Miller

May 18, 2022