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Sabbath School Discussion on the Book of Ephesians

Ted N.C. Wilson


Ted N.C. Wilson

President of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists



  • October 15, 2005
    9:00 AM
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good morning to you and happy Sabbath what a privilege it is to worship the Lord on the Sabbath and to be part of his great adventure family around the world I've had the privilege of being at Advent hope for a couple times and my daughters two of them we have three daughters lived from time to time and really receive a great blessing from Advent hope this morning this morning I've appreciated that fantastic him that we just sang great is thy morning by morning new mercies I see all I have needed thy hand hath provided great is thy faithfulness Lord unto me this quarter was starting from the book of Eugene while most inspiring books in Scripture in terms of relationships in terms of spiritual connection with God and with each other it's a very practical book and yet an extremely extremely profound book in terms of our relationship with God and understanding God 's faithfulness what God has done for us what he is doing for us in the most holy Place in the sanctuary in heaven and what he will do for God 's promises will not fail his faithfulness is a short merger gentlemen who were traveling in the Central American country of Nicaragua one was a pastor and the other was one of his assistants a church elder they were traveling in a very difficult time in the history of Nicaragua and in a very difficult place in that particular country it was during the time of the Sandinistas a time when people were a bit unsure as to exactly what direction the country would take everyone suspected each other the the pastor and his head elder were headed to a remote mountain church in order to provide literature spiritual encouragement instruction and to foster the church in a wonderful way in a remote area on their way they were stopped by one hundred twenty centimeters to soldiers and had Officer they were ordered to get out of the car and the officer searched the car in the front he found a Bible in the songbook or in the car in the back of the car he found other things yes the pastor were you going best explained what direction he was taking going into the mountains to try and help some of his fellow believers in the off-season I do believe you just a bunch of spots the officers stood there we began to go through the songbook the author said you know we don't despise he said make them dig their own shallow raisin and registry that he was going through the songbook he came to a song that said take my life and let it these of you know that one past yes while singing so the pastor and his head elder had to stand there and sing a song they sang a duet and it touched the hearts of many of those they knew to us rages the officer went through the Bible and he came to Psalm ninety one as he came to Psalm ninety one he says you know some as you said yes I know if you'd be able to stand up and repeat some ninety one it's a beautiful one but it's quite involved pastor knew of God the Congress and his promises any new Scripture and he knew his relationship with God we stood there is any repeat in Psalm ninety one from memory while the officer was impressed it was almost persuaded but he still down I picked out a few more chapters in you know from Scripture in John fourteen first rent is thirteen and the pastor knew his lord you usually use description officer was really impressed by this time but then he picked out Matt you jabber for me said the do you know the story about Jesus calling his disciples this God has a relationship with his creature 's human creatures is creating as I know that story well I just discern and so that pastor without notes without his Bible took that beautiful story of Jesus calling his disciples and wove it into the most appealing sermon he had ever given to the power of the Holy Spirit I didn't just with the story you then proceeded to make an appeal any appeal to those soldiers to make Christ the chief in their life to have the relationship that only Jesus can have what those who are his creatures and when he finished those soldiers of Harden Sandinista soldiers under twentieth of moist eyes soften and introduced to the God of all faithfulness to God wants a relationship with you forgot it was made the provision throughout eternity since the beginning of time for your salvation and as that creature that pastor presented that message those the soldiers were soft and finally the officer in charge of those hundred twenty men said I am persuaded you are we've say you are is that if you have been unable to share with us those beautiful prunes we would absolutely kill but he says I was once a Christian then I lost my I admire you night of the what you're doing and he said in the future when UN your associate here in the head elder need to get up into that mountain area should you contact me and we will provide an official escorts on the one about you see that Pastor and that health and elder new who they were they knew their Bible and they knew that God relationships relationships with each other but most want me to relationship with God book of Ephesians has it some of the most powerful appeals to our personal process of salvation in your understanding of who we are and what God has done for us the first chapter is what were setting today announced were to get into a limit value when my daughter Emily told me that I was going to be teaching on the sentence was I thought it was going to be one of the classes that I attended in the back where we grew a nice circle together because that's the way I like the status quo I I coordinate a Sabbath school class in the small church that I attended in the member and have a great time in a wonderful Sabbath school exchange and dynamic because we focused on Scripture we don't just talk off the tops of our hands we read the Scripture and then we would ask the Holy Spirit really will the Holy Spirit help us to understand it in a practical way and that's what I do today so don't think that just because were all set up here and as one of our leaders mentioned earlier that don't move your chairs are just all going to have Sabbath school presented by Ted Wilson know you're going to be the status quo because of a talk about this relationship the relationship of this pastor and had Elder had with God this relationship that explains the faithfulness of God and what he did from the very very beginning for us what he's doing for us right now the first chapter of Ephesians which is what we're going to focus on this morning is really divided into three stanzas three sections and dozens of little matter of the introduction the first stanza is a section of verses one through six and introduction about God about Jesus the second stanza is in this is primarily about God the father first six verses than that of the second stanza begins with essentially verse seven and runs through verse twelve and this is talking about God the Christ the son then there is a third section beginning with verses thirteen and fourteen which really emphasizes God the Holy Spirit so you see in the very beginning of the book of Ephesians in those few verses verses that we are actually going to be looking at were talking about God the father son and Holy Spirit and all of them from the very beginning had an emphasis on saving those whom they create I didn't think your Bibles and ninety two almost all of you have some time delighted with that in turn Ephesians one were going to read the first rack she can be reading this entire section but were going to be stopping and letting the Holy Spirit help to interpret what we read and what it means to us now I know what it is like when you're in a setting like this and not in a circle right and you're maybe a little hesitant to say something I want you to forget all of them forget that I'm even up here just pretend you're in small circles again right and feel very free to express what the Holy Spirit is telling you about the verses that were to be reading because several school is not a didactic time when a speaker just gets up and talk it's a time when we really study the word of God and I tell you unfortunately many places people are not availing themselves of the beautiful experiences encourage your friends to come study of the word it's where they'll gain practical experience now fortunately today we have two experts with us as well my eye very good friends Dick and JoAnn Davidson and Pastor Davidson is going to be speaking to you for church so if we really get stuck on some interpretation that we don't act now Doctor Davidson is actually at an expert in the Old Testament right before delving into the New Testament but knows a lot about the New Testament as well Joanne 's wife is a systematic theologian someone who can help us to understand the process and the understanding of of of theology so we really get stuck again Joanne will will call on you but I think there's a lot of wisdom here because the Holy Spirit as believers in the soon coming of Christ Artemis at that moment all of us are to be good students work so let's look at Ephesians chapter one now I'd like you to to begin with the first two verses and Margaret have people read persons no more than two verses each read through section right now normally in my Sabbath school class we just start around the circle and everybody reads and then we just just talk about but I suppose in this group will just have to call on volunteers or ask somebody so maybe the first two verses of this chapter are late right now I want you to read that again will ask you to read you also raise your hand I want to read the same verses but I want you to substitute and then hope for Ephesus write and read it again what was to versus telling you this morning and the quietness of burden all grace BTU and peace right here at Advent hope what kind of impression you get that Paul is trying to give to each of us in this room the smart any comments significant about peace and the greatest what is this great studies thoughts on our member were in a circle were not in the amphitheater group by the grace of Christ need anything to yours is just some kind of a nice little salutation that all is throwing out where he really means something to you personally this morning any thoughts on late right guide beautiful very very nice in fact whoever it is each lesson as you get into regions to have a great time because that's one of my favorite chapters in all of Scripture there is an inverse age of chapter two four by grace are you saved through faith and that not of yourselves it is the gift of tremendously this resists Armen the other day using that section just so full of this faithfulness and love Jesus and it really sound to some of the verses were talking about interested in just a moment or so let's move on into the next section and the next day the next verse verse three would like to read them first recently I'll grant you that now an hour into MPEG they go right ahead in our diet right now you you just think you like Bruce Warren were to document that the zealots talk about both of them in verse three what does it mean to be blessed with spiritual blessing right now you can stand up and say Lord bless me and I got through that tested this last week or I was able to sell my car for a good price and buy another one nor yet I had a good good talk with so-and-so onion on I'm on the firm now in the Lords really good but what is it needs spiritual blessing I just personal blessings the kind of make you feel like life is going in right direction yes beautiful I know that that's excellent any other thoughts wait very and absolutely leaves you are I will grant on now I didn't I will and will and will and in yeah I will all will you will and will will will will you disclose because verse four would you really want to read and which is so important talks about this very aspect and were talking oh in verse five about but let's get into it predestination right now in verse four as wordlessly as we looking at that it says here and an inverse three is as God the father was blessed us with the spiritual blessings in heavenly places according as he now that's God the father hath chosen us in him that's in Christ him for the foundation of the world that we should be holy and without blame before him in love and is not what was it how do you understand that to be interpreted that God knowing that you were going to be an alcoholic still had chosen you before the foundation of the world to be holy and without blame what's that say to you all will is a beautiful testimony was a need to be chosen chosen by God please okay right nice thought memories is it's a spiritual template it's a spiritual DNA that God has has has actually provided for everyone if indeed they want to tap into it so what you're saying right any other thoughts on this before we get into verse five okay again this is a medical campus years under their weight people who the characteristics that actually make us up as individuals are implanted in us just genetically from our parents and all of that now some of you who can explain it better you can do better job than I am but God in a way has chosen not sorry to he's actually implanted in us by faith the opportunity of being holy and without blame right was good I comment to great okay as some of you who are of my generation will remember a young seminar called basic youth conflicts academic it's still going on but it it really impacted a number of us and basic youth conflicts least we would go to these seminars were you would learn how to trust in Jesus and what the what the real Christian life is all about as a as a young person and I have this little pin that they used to give out that people would wear and it just looked like a jumbled alphabet soup on level letters on but it actually represented the first letter of a word in two sentences and I don't have it here with me today for you to look at but it had always these letters P BEP and a whole bunch of letters and that all represented please be patient God is not finished with me yet right the process of sanctification write how God works on us to bring us to this point of being holy and without blame I know it's diversified because in verse five in verse six somebody to read those two verses in these two verses we start talking about a concept that some people twist in an improper way because if God has chosen us and he wants us to reach this particular level and Margarita a word here her pre- predestinate predestination of people how is it that we fall so short of being what God predestined us to be arson they read verses five and six but not for us I live in six okay we got unpacked and sources does this mean that everyone in the world is predestined to be saying and if you if you replying affirmatively why do we have a lot of people that look like an increasing level one of these two verses talking please alright I learned so were talking about something that God intended and is available but it doesn't mean that everybody walks lockstep in that if we don't choose to be in Christ essentially I think that may be what you would you say please write and turn those of you have the lesson study guide terms of the last page of the lesson Friday October fourteen I like so many to stand up and read the second quotation in the spirit of prophecy it's actually referring to verses four and five their Ellen White comments about God 's predestination in the Council of heaven that section is someone you have that here okay go right ahead right in your will and will go all in go in and he and he will give you know what you need to be adopted by Christ and give me your reaction to that adopted by Christ as one of his children might theologian on all I did and he together I might has a comments GG has some great comments and ourselves last thank you Nancy under the urine of the home for Thanksgiving just think for a moment what it will be like to truly be home and give complete Thanksgiving be in heaven with him to be part of that adopted family because of what God has done from the foundation of this world was going to versus seven and eight the need to move along and finish so we can hear the word of God preached to us in a few moments seven and eight would like to read verses seven and eight one just waits as a nice translation that you are spirit friends this aspect of having the dead redemption number six it says he has made us accepted in the beloved in whom we have redemption through his blood the forgiveness of sins according to the riches of his grace perhaps verse seven is one of the most central verses in this chapter because it really gets to the core as to why we can be adopted as children of God because of Christ what why was it important that the blood of Jesus a ship why this this focus upon redemption through blood the forgiveness of sins this relationship and in regard of the very beginning having this relationship with God knowing as a pastor and in Nicaragua God intimately and that was the way that God was able to speak through him why is it important to understand this kind of a relationship of reduction through his blood any thoughts on the comments on this the central focus at right so it's essential for this relationship in the back and then when the only yes so they need the reading of this guilt and forgiveness is part of this regaining process weight yes nice testimony yes right giving of life of the creator or his creatures as a theme would be setting throughout eternity we do not understand the intricate composition of this incredible beautiful theme of salvation of the redeeming power of Jesus but but we know that it happened we know that it needed to happen and that blood of Jesus Christ is as has been mentioned is the only way that we have access to eternal life I'll let anyone else persuade you otherwise don't know except any concepts that might say well he died to show us his great love or some other concept that doesn't quite cover the need for that life-giving power that you're talking about is only through the blood of Jesus Christ his shed blood for us that we have this opportunity to become children of his by adoption no verse eight does read that your translation have a very nice and a beautiful way of expressing her state and lavished a beautiful work this plan which he established before the foundation of the world providing this relationship and the salvation for creatures that were going to send that he knew were going to send why did he create them well that's another question will ask and get some answers in heaven but he lavished this beautiful redemption process honest what a beautiful Bartlett beautiful white the right parents love the lavish things on their children even if they don't have a lot to lavish on them I still enjoy it it's just hair on the plane yesterday my wife brought a whole carry things yet another suggest that you run a whole Kerry think full of food that she pulled out of the freezer the last minute just to take our daughters as you know not a lot of money but it's just lavishing good things on those that we love that's what God does for granted like I may have we got five minutes here I remember to do justice to the rest of the section which we had which is not the verse fourteen but I want somebody to read versus nine to fourteen we rented take a little more time with each one but read those verses nine to fourteen as someone in translation I have King James which I use but one maybe a little more modern version here are nine to fourteen late guarantees this wonderful provision of salvation by Jesus Christ to the power of the Holy Spirit estate one minute two minutes just tell me a little bit in your own heart how do you react to this lavishness that God has towards us that he is guaranteeing that you can have a place in heaven with him if you will but accept him and allow the Holy Spirit to work in your life when I is good to three words what ones that you are says a lot right that's good concise answer another commented June alleluia I love what is a need to be sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise but it says and in my and my King James version sealed with the Holy Spirit upon us that mean that you just kind of well you know I guess the everything is all done and I've been predestined and of course we understand that not what it means but I guess I really don't have a lot to do with the need to be sealed with that holy Spirit of promise weight irritable help us to know right from wrong and to be able to grow in Jesus in a sanctified way every day as we trust in person for justification as we by faith except the working of the Holy Spirit and sanctification and appear and that means guaranteed and if we won't tap into this and accept Christ that he will true this special promise in the Holy Spirit he will help us to accomplish its promise to guarantee listen to this quotation as we close from testimonies of the church volume nine page nineteen with this beautiful truth that we has ever been out of this have I we just do this kind of the relish the lavishness of Jesus and enjoy being part of this community of fellowship you're not at home or wherever or are you supposed to take and share the great mission of the Seventh-day Adventist church the Advent movement listen to what what we're told here in a special sense Seventh-day Adventists have been set in the world as watchmen and light bearers to them has it been entrusted the last morning for a perishing world and what great news we have for the scourge world on them is shining wonderful light from the word of God including the first part of Ephesians one which just tells us this wonderful relationship we can have with God they had been given a work of the most solemn import the proclamation of the first second and third Angels messages there is no other work of so great importance they are to allow nothing else to absorb their attention this tremendous truth that God has given to us embodied in what we just talked about this redemption and understanding of how we grow in him is to be shared without it is the proclamation of the three angels that are to go forward the proclamation of Christ righteousness and his righteousness alone in Christ we can be blameless and holy we can be part of this great family chosen by God grasped it into his family by adoption and redemption and that's a message we need to share with others a message that will then soften hearts and draw them the powerful message of Jesus and help people understand what it really means to be part of this great adventure family to be included in this Advent movement there were some soldiers in war who lost one of their friends and as they were mourning the loss of this young man everybody to fellows who had survived didn't know if their friend was a Christian or not but they decided to bearing and in a field near the area where he was killed and he was buried without a religious service and as they proceeded to leave the little area they are ready have buried him they had second thoughts and they went back and they actually exhumed his body and they took his body to a church and they asked the pastor of this church if they could bury their friend in the churchyard because you know in some way people have a thought that if you are buried in the churchyard at least then God would have some favor on you because you are part of the church you are part of the believers were part of the people that had a relationship with God and so the pastor urban reason to young soldiers and what denomination this core Hollywood and I was from and they said we don't know and we don't even know he was a Christian when the pastor of the think about it he said that they couldn't bury them in the churchyard if they didn't know if he was a Christian and so they argued about it for a while and finally they came to a compromise and the pastor indicated you can you can bury him just outside the wall of the churchyard and so those young fellows got a hold with their colleague and just outside the fence outside the wall of the church in that night in a hard time sleeping and they resolved that they were to return and exhume the body again and they would take that body to some church I guess that would include in inside the wall and they went back a little while later the next morning trying to find the place where this young fellow had been buried outside the wall of the confinement finally they went to the pastor they reduced how disturbed and they talked with them and they said where is our friend buried because we want to take the body and find a place for him inside the walls pastor said well said last night I couldn't sleep I was concerned about the man that was buried outside the church wall so I got up and moved well that's a little apocryphal story that perhaps doesn't quite cover the way Jesus looks at this but he's made new regrouping was inside the wall every provision to be part of his drinking and he will do anything possible to bring us into that relationship and each of us have that relationship with him as we look forward to Christ and you stand a secret father in heaven we thank you for this emphasis this quarter on the book of Ephesians understanding our relationship in Christ Jesus how will everything to him how we'll ever think of the father the son and the Holy Spirit in the justification process the sanctification process and ultimately the glorification more than we owe everything to me thank you for this wonderful theme of redemption as we continue to study help us not only to keep it to ourselves but help us share it with others so that all I grace of Jesus and be included within the wall of salvation and we can be together again or in Jesus name yes and


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