Walking Worthy of Our Calling, Part 22 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #224)
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.”
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 4:3-6:
3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;
5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism,
6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
Charles Spurgeon said, “If you look down into a well, if it be empty it will appear to be very deep; but if there be water in it, you will see its brightness. I believe that many ‘deep’ preachers are simply so because they are like dry wells with nothing in them except decaying leaves, a few stones, and perhaps a dead cat or two. If there be living water in your preaching, it may be very deep, but the light of truth will give clearness to it.”
Leonard Ravenhill said, “I’m embarrassed to be a part of the so-called church of Jesus Christ today because I believe it’s an embarrassment to a Holy God.”
In their book, The Ten Greatest Revivals Ever, Elmer Towns and Douglas Porter share with us: “The Cane Ridge Revival of 1800 actually began in a communion service at the Red River Church near the Tennessee-Kentucky border. Reverend James McGready was administering the ecumenical service, preaching a Friday-to-Monday meeting. Nothing unusual happened until Monday. Then a woman at the far end of the house gave vent to her feelings in loud cries and shouts. When dismissed, the congregation showed no disposition to leave, but many of them remained, silently weeping, in every part of the house.”
We ought to strive to maintain unity in the body of Christ because we have one God who is the Father of us all. Paul tells us that this Father is also “above all, and through all, and in you all.”
The fact that God is “above” us, reminds us that He is sovereign and superior. Nothing in the universe is higher than God. One term that could be used to describe the “aboveness” of God is to say that He is “transcendent.” He is not dependent on anyone or anything for existence. We need Him; He does not need us.
Although God is above all things and people, He also exists “through all and in you all” — specifically through and in the members of His church. William Blaikie said God is “pervading the whole universe, sustaining and ruling it, not dwelling apart from his works, but pervading them, not, however, in any pantheistic sense, but as a personal God, whose essence is separate from his works.” The devil has deceived many in the world into thinking that God is distant. But, we in the church, know that He draws nigh to His people. Even though He does not need us, He lives in us and works through us. In His mercy and grace, He has chosen to use the weak, sinful, flawed creatures of this world to carry out His work.
Someone once wrote —
God builds His church and makes it strong
By using you and me;
And if we all will do our part,
The world Christ’s love will see.