Alive in Christ, Part 2 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #164)

spiritual-warfare

A series of homilies on Ephesians

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


Daniel Whyte III

Daniel Whyte III

I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

TEXT: Ephesians 2:1-3:

1 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;

2 Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:

3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.

—-

Jonathan Goforth said, “If revival is being withheld from us it is because some idol remains still enthroned; because we still insist in placing our reliance in human schemes; because we still refuse to face the unchangeable truth that, ‘It is not by might, but by My Spirit.'”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “I read of the revivals of the past, great sweeping revivals where thousands of men were swept into the Kingdom of God. I read about Charles G. Finney winning his thousands and his hundreds of thousands of souls to Christ. Then I picked up a book and read the messages of Charles G. Finney and the message of Jonathan Edwards on ‘Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,’ and I said, ‘No wonder men trembled; no wonder they fell at the altars, cried out in repentance, and sobbed their way to the throne of grace!'”

—-

We live in a society that is always reminding us to look forward, to look to the future, to anticipate the next big thing. Even in our churches, preachers dole out sensational messages about what the future holds for the faithful. But, it is unwise to look to the future and ignore the past because, as Shakespeare wrote, “What’s past is prologue.” What has happened before gives context to what is happening now and what will happen in the future.

In the passage that we are considering today, Paul is reminding the Ephesian believers of their past. For some reason, it is important that they do not forget where they have come from. Paul says, “Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience.”

The term “walk” is often used in the Bible as a metaphor for one’s lifestyle. Paul is saying that the believers at Ephesus used to follow the course of the world, the flesh, and the devil. They used to live just like the “children of disobedience.”

As Christians, we often get saved and then get comfortable. We forget about the past and what Christ has saved us from. This leads to many Christians who, instead of reaching out to the lost, look down their noses at them. It also leads to churches which have an inward focus instead of an outward focus. We have forgotten that we used to be just like the world until God rescued us and saved us by His grace. We are not better than those who remain in the world. We simply have been rescued from the world by Jesus Christ.

This sentiment is expressed in this poem by Carol Wimmer:

When I say, “I am a Christian”
I’m not shouting, “I’ve been saved!”
I’m whispering, “I was lost!
That’s why I chose this way”.

When I say, “I am a Christian”
I don’t speak with human pride
I’m confessing that I stumble –
Needing God to be my guide

When I say, “I am a Christian”
I still feel the sting of pain
I have had my share of heartache,
Which is why I seek His name.

When I say, “I am a Christian”
I’m not bragging of success
I’m admitting that I’ve failed
And can’t ever pay my debt.

If we remember where we have come from and where the course of the world eventually leads, we will be more inclined to shine the light of the Gospel to those who still desperately need it.

Advertisements
  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: