On this wall were inscriptions that have been discovered by archaeologists, which warn that if a Gentile goes beyond the barrier, he will have himself to blame for his death which follows. 12:18), “If possible, so far as it depends on you, live at peace with all men.” He says (Rom. God’s holy law created a barrier between sinners and God. Ephesians 2:11-22: At the start of chapter 2 of Paul’s letter to the Ephesians [note we did Ephesians 3:1-13 yesterday, and the start of chapter 2 the day before], Paul described the beauty and power of the gospel. He talks about Christ making the two groups into one, breaking down the wall between them, and creating the two into one new man. 8:6-13). Who is the chief cornerstone? Pastor Chance Strickland. v. 14b. Only the cross, where Jesus reconciled sinners with God, gains access into heaven. Paul pictured the alienation between the Jews and Gentiles in his day as “the barrier of the dividing wall.” He was probably referring to a four-foot wall in the temple precincts that divided the Court of the Gentiles from where the rest of the Jews could worship. We don’t have to achieve racial reconciliation, it exists. Christ’s Work of Reconciliation (Ephesians 2: 13-22) A. He uses the word “peace” four times (2:14, 15, 17 [twice]). When he finally saw him coming in the distance, the father felt compassion for him, ran to him, embraced him, kissed him, and joyously welcomed him back into the family. Those who were once \"dead in sins\" are now alive in Christ (Ephesians 2:1-10); and those who were once \"aliens and strangers separated from God\" are now members of God's family (Ephesians 2:11-22). The Peace and Reconciliation of Ephesians 2:14 July / August 2018 . 10 – Ephesians 2:11-15 – Reconciliation. Those are both relational commandments. The practical implication of this is that there is no basis for dividing the church along racial lines, unless there is a language barrier that keeps us from worshiping together. This chapter contains an account, I. “For He Himself is our peace…” (2:14). Why? Ephesians 1 – The Work of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in God’s Eternal... Ephesians 3 – The Fellowship of the Mystery What implications does this have for Christian unity. Jesus said that the greatest commandment in the Law is to love God with our entire being. The logical way to deal with the topic would be to start with reconciliation with God and then go on to reconciliation on the human level. Later, when their father has died, the brothers fear that Joseph would inflict revenge that he had been withholding. How about the Jews? This barrier in the temple symbolized the deep hostilities between the Jews and the Gentiles. Cain proudly thought that his sacrifice to God was better than his brother’s sacrifice. A well-maintained wall surrounding a beautifully manicured garden is valuable and beneficial. There are helpful walls, and there are harmful walls. The other is Jesus’ parable of the prodigal son. So even though we are prone toward conflict, even with other believers, the way toward peace is to have Christ reigning as Lord in each heart. Two stories in the Bible evoke strong feelings in me every time I read them. 3:19-24). Although Israelis as a whole are not yet believers in Christ, do you think the United States should continue to politically support their cause over against the Palestinians? The second greatest is that we should love our neighbor as ourselves (Matt. The dividing wall has been taken down (Ephesians 2:14), with the law of commandments abolished to make one new family (Ephesians 2:15), creating reconciliation and ending hostility (Ephesians 2:16). So he begins with the problem at hand and then goes deeper to the foundational reconciliation with God that results in reconciliation between formerly hostile groups. 5. Outside the Temple there was a yard, called the court of the Gentiles, and a wall. When God rejected Cain’s sacrifice, he grew angry and murdered his brother. Christ not only made peace, but He is our peace. Key text: “For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. SOLI DEO GLORIA! Ephesians 2:11-12 The Gospel and Racial Reconciliation Noted international evangelist Billy Graham stated: “Racial and ethnic hostility is the foremost social problem facing our world today.” This startling observation suggests that racism is more than just one of many problems in the world. Does debt affect giving in modern times in light of the Israelite tithe and slaves? It is a reality that we must walk in, but it has already been accomplished in Christ. But when sin entered the human race, it alienated Adam and Eve from God and from one another. g. How is it possible for their former circumstances to be radically changed? That powerful story shows the tremendous joy both of reconciled human relationships and also of sinners being reconciled to the heavenly Father. Ephesians 2:15 "Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, [even] the law of commandments [contained] in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, [so] making peace;" Christ forever broke down (the Greek aorist tense signifies completed action), every dividing wall by; “abolished in His flesh the enmity, which is the Law of commandments contained in ordinances”. But the point of verse 17 is, it is not only the pagan Gentiles who need to hear the good news of peace with God through the blood of Christ. c. Who or what is this building that is being addressed? v. 17. Read. Neville Chamberlain made that mistake with Hitler. Invariably, pacifists make the mistake of thinking that people are basically good (not basically evil) and if we just treat them nicely and sit down and talk, they will be nice to us in return. What are the results of reconciliation as opposed to our previous condition as Gentiles? But, how? Paul explains how Christ established this new peace between the Jews and Gentiles: I prefer the marginal reading of the NASB (Eph. What about the name for the Jews? How about just good friends of the family? What are the Gentiles called, and by whom? But that last section, verses 8-10, seems good for individual reconciliation as well. Another barrier kept them from going any further in. Also. And, how can we be reconciled to one another? 3:11). The fact that Christ is our peace does not mean that peace happens automatically, even between sincere, godly believers. Husbands and wives argue and fight because each one wants his or her way and is not willing to consider the other’s point of view. A Simple Bible Study Resource Reconciliation (2:16) Normal Word for “Reconcile” (katallasso): to change from one condition to another; a change of attitude or relationship the word used of bringing together friends who have been estranged // William Barclay, The Letters to the Galatians and Ephesians, The New Daily Study Bible (Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press, 2002), 134. And so the great problem of the human race is, how can we be reconciled to a holy God from whom we are estranged because of our sin and rebellion? (The Greek word “Christ” means “Anointed one”). Happy New Year: Past, Present, and Future Perspectives. Jesus Christ perfectly kept God’s law, not only externally, but also on the heart level. Of the miserable condition of these Ephesians by nature and again (v. 11, v. 12). His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of two, thus making peace” (Ephesians 2:14-15). He further explains that the source of this enmity was “the Law of commandments contained in ordinances.” The word “abolished” means “nullified” or “rendered inoperative.” “In His flesh” refers to Christ’s death on the cross. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace, 16 and in one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility. One is the story of Joseph and his brothers. (Eph 2:11-12) The need for the reconciliation of Gentile and Jew. Lesson objective: To understand that the former world was divided into two hostile groups of Jews and Gentiles. Who made the peace? For example, many in our country say that if we had just used diplomacy with the Muslim extremists, we could have avoided war. Why not? v. 11. As John MacArthur put it (The MacArthur New Testament Commentary, Ephesians [Moody Press], p. 76), “Peace comes only when self dies, and the only place self truly dies is at the foot of Calvary.”. Through the cross, Christ fulfilled and thereby nullified or abolished the old covenant law (this harmonizes Eph. 21 June 2020. Jesus Christ gains us access to the God of the universe, who is a Father to us because of the cross! But Paul begins here with peace between formerly alienated people (2:14-15) and then goes to the underlying cause of this reconciliation, namely, reconciliation between those groups and God (2:16-18). Of the glorious change that was wrought in them by converting grace and again . Copyright, Steven J. Cole, 2007, All Rights Reserved. It’s easy to discern Paul’s theme here. Israel learned quickly of the need for barriers between themselves and God. Chapter 2. III. Paul was in the temple when a mob falsely accused him of bringing Trophimus, an Ephesian Gentile, beyond the barrier (Acts 21:27-36). 3:14), “in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we would receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.” So through the cross, Christ established the basis for peace between sinners and the holy God and peace between the Jews and the Gentiles. And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, a. Epistles: Ephesians 2:11-22 – The Divine Reconciliation in Christ. Ephesians 2 is the second chapter of the Epistle to the Ephesians in the New Testament of the Christian Bible.Traditionally, it is believed to have been written by Apostle Paul while he was in prison in Rome (around AD 62), but more recently it has been suggested that it was written between AD 80 and 100 by another writer using Paul's name and style. f. Who has access to the Father? 4. Who inhabits this place? making a reconciliation of the two in a body reconciled to God. Lloyd-Jones. I’m not suggesting that we should be quick to go to war, but I am saying that if we try to negotiate, we had better keep in mind the fact that all people are selfish, proud sinners. One of the marks of true conversion is when those who formerly were deeply hostile towards one another begin to pursue peace with one another. (Ephesians 2:5-7) The past, present and future of God’s work of individual reconciliation. If Paul was writing to the Ephesians from his imprisonment in Rome, they probably would have known about this barrier, even if they had never visited Jerusalem, because the incident that had led to Paul’s imprisonment involved one of their men. Reconciliation - Ephesians 2:11 -22 Manifold Mystery - Ephesians 3 Unity of the Church - Ephesians 4:1-10 Building the Body - Ephesians 4:10-16 Old Man, New Man - Ephesians 4:17-32 Imitation of God - Ephesians 5:1-14 Wives, Submit Yourselves - Ephesians 5:15 – 33 Children and Slaves - Ephesians 6:1 – 9 Armor of God - Ephesians 6:10 – 24 10 – Ephesians 2:11-15 – Reconciliation. 4. So the law created a barrier between the Jews and the Gentiles. Paul is making the radical assertion that Christ has erased these centuries of racial hatred. What two have been made one, and how is this done? v. 14c. Pride and selfishness account for everything from wars between nations to conflicts in our families. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of two, thus making peace” (Ephesians 2:14-15). Sunday, January 10, 2021. See 1 Samuel 17:26. Satan appealed to the pride of Adam and Eve by tempting them to think that they knew better than God what was good for them. Here Paul 1 focuses on the reconciliation of Jew and Gentile, which falls within God’s bigger move of reconciling humanity from sin and death to life. 5:1), “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” So the basis for being reconciled to God is not anything that you do, but only by trusting in what Jesus did for you on the cross. Sunday, January 10, 2021. 3:5-6), “circumcised the eighth day, of the nation of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the Law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to the righteousness which is in the Law, found blameless.” But, keep reading (3:7), “But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ.” He goes on to emphasize that he did not stand before God in a righteousness of his own derived from the Law, but rather through the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith (3:9). 13, 17-18). Now He reconciles this one body to God through the cross, by it having put to death the enmity. In this session, Voddie Baucham unpacks Ephesians 2:10-11 to show the sufficiency of Christ’s death on the cross to bring us near in perfect reconciliation. II. They would never eat with a Gentile. He instituted the new covenant in His blood, which puts His holy law into the hearts of believers (Heb. If you are in Christ and I am in Christ, then He Himself becomes the source of peace between us. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture Quotations are from the New American Standard Bible, Updated Edition © The Lockman Foundation, Related Topics: Ecclesiology (The Church), Atonement, Forgiveness, Steve served as the pastor of Flagstaff Christian Fellowship from May, 1992 through his retirement in December, 2018. So, as Paul writes, because Christ bore the curse of the law on the cross (Gal. But the law also created a barrier between the Jews and the Gentiles. Wyatt Ciesielka There are real walls, and there are symbolic walls. Sin always causes alienation towards God and between people. Inside that barrier only Jewish men were permitted, but only to find another barrier for the priests alone to enter. The Father testified of Jesus (Matt. Many stipulations in the law excluded Gentiles from the Jewish forms of worship. Religious rituals won’t reconcile you to Him. In this verse, can you detect the Trinity at work in the reconciliation of humanity? What do you say? In other words, this was God’s plan for the reconciliation of both Jews and Gentiles into one new people in Christ. See Leviticus 12:1-3. b. 3:28). There are two obvious applications of these verses. The law shut up everyone under sin. Praise God in Christ for his divine reconciliation and the inclusion of us all in calling forth a new humanity. Give examples of how the law may have been a barrier for you before becoming a believer in grace. 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