Redemption and Inheritance:
The Blessings of Christ’s Death




7 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: 12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.

Ephesians 1:7-12


  1. This chapter, and Rom 8-9, exalts God’s sovereignty in salvation over others in the New Testament.
    1. Here is where election is defined as God’s choice of men and predestination is mentioned twice.
    2. Here is where the will of God in salvation is mentioned four times but the will of man is ignored.
    3. Here is where the heresy of accepting Jesus is grandly replaced with God accepting us in Jesus.
    4. Here is where praise of God’s glory is stated three times but praise of or for men is fully ignored.
    5. Here is where emphasis is clearly on the pleasure (2) and purpose (2) of God, not desire of man.
    6. Here is where the emphasis is on God’s glory (5) and grace (3), not the value or worth of man.
    7. Here is where Jesus Christ is exalted far above the highest heaven and why? For you and me.
    8. Here is where we learn the crucial power necessary for a sinner to believe – resurrection power.
    9. Here is where we learn our God and Father works all things after the counsel of His own will.
    10. Here is where God’s own purpose in and for Himself is more important than any purpose of men.
  2. This chapter presents the truth of the gospel kept secret since the beginning of the world and from most Christians even today (1:8-9; 3:1-13; I Cor 2:6-16).

The Hopeless Problem

  1. God has, does, and will reject all men for sinful rebellion they persist in perpetually; there is no hope of change in God or man to ever bring about His acceptance of them.
  2. By inheritance and nature, God hates you as a condemned rebel enemy of Himself.
    1. By birth, you are related to Adam and condemned for his one sin (Rom 5:12-19).
    2. By birth, you inherited his sinful nature that loves sin and hates God (Eph 2:1-3).
    3. By nature, you continue in sin every day offending God daily (Rom 3:9-18,23).
  3. Your depraved heart and mind are too proud and rebellious to believe His revelation.
    1. The natural creation is sufficient, but men invent any imaginable excuse against it.
    2. Though consciences condemn them, men flagrantly sin against internal morality.
    3. No matter how well the gospel is preached, it moves no man (I Co 2:14; Rom 8:7).
  4. The evidence of God’s dealings with men as recorded in the Bible is rejection of men.
    1. God sent a worldwide flood and drowned every man, woman, and child but eight.
    2. God annihilated seven nations of Canaan so His chosen people could possess it.
    3. Greek philosophers honored the unknown God, but it would not spare them at all.
  5. All the evidence we can gather from our own experience confirms this dire situation.
    1. Death clutches against us every day of our lives and takes down every living soul.
    2. Creation without cooperation shouts loudly that there is a God with eternal power.
    3. Great differences among men in intellect, bodies, and circumstances are grim.
    4. Natural disasters, from diseases to tsunamis, take human life without any regard.
    5. Babies are ripped apart in wombs or die horrible deaths of starvation after birth.
  6. The testimony of scripture is absolute and thorough against God accepting any sinner.
    1. God said to Cain, If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? And if not well, sin … (Ge 4:7).
    2. Keep thee far from a false matter … for I will not justify the wicked (Exodus 23:7).
    3. Beware of him … provoke him not; he will not pardon your transgressions (Ex 23:21).
    4. The LORD, the LORD God … and that will by no means clear the guilty (Exodus 34:7).
    5. Ye cannot serve the LORD: for he is an holy God; he is a jealous God; he will not forgive your transgressions nor your sins (Josh 24:19).
    6. If I sin, then thou markest me, and thou wilt not acquit me from mine iniquity (Job 10:14).
    7. God accepteth not the persons of princes … they all are the work of his hands (Jb 34:19).
    8. The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity (Psalm 5:5).
    9. God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day (Psalm 7:11).
    10. The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God (Psalm 9:17).
    11. The LORD trieth the righteous: but the wicked … his soul hateth (Psalm 11:5).
    12. I hate, I despise your feast days … I will not accept them (Amos 5:21-24; Hos 8:12-14).
    13. The LORD is … great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked (Nahum 1:3).
    14. God will render to every man according to his deeds (Rom 2:6).
    15. Every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God (Ro 3:19).
    16. The wages of sin is death (Rom 6:23).
    17. God accepteth no man’s person (Gal 2:6; Luke 20:21).
    18. For our God is a consuming fire (Heb 12:29).
    19. Whoever was not found written in the book of life was cast in the lake of fire (Re 20:15).
    20. And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth (Rev 21:27).
  7. You have arrived in life, very conscious of existence, and you cannot turn it off.
    1. If you think consciousness is from inanimate matter, then you are a rebel idiot.
    2. There is an infinite consciousness you will face and give account of your life.
    3. Or choose … random acts of pain and violence … or deal with a holy God.
    4. You will certainly come to an end of life … and He cannot accept you at all.
    5. He has already rejected you, and He will formally declare it Judgment Day.
    6. Expected return of infinite pain, if only a 5% chance, is infinitely horrific.
  8. You are doomed, and there is nothing you can or will even try to do about it.
    1. Though you may be convicted now, it will end in five minutes with a distraction.
    2. You are in serious trouble, and the consequences are beyond your imagination.
    3. No governor will accept you, how much less will God (Malachi 1:8,10,13)?

The Heavenly Provision

7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

  1. Continuing the list of spiritual blessings in Jesus Christ, Paul next defined redemption.
  2. The importance of being in Christ Jesus cannot be overstated – our union with Christ.
    1. The preceding verse is in the Beloved, and this union had been stated several times.
    2. The whom we are in is Jesus Christ; our redemption and forgiveness are in Him.
    3. We are in Him … because Paul wrote this epistle to faithful believers in Him (1:1).
    4. We are in Him … because God blessed us with all spiritual blessings in Him (1:3).
    5. We are in Him … because God chose from the beginning for us to be in Him (1:4).
    6. We are in Him … because God’s gracious purpose made us accepted in Him (1:6).
    7. So we are in Jesus Christ eternally (1:3-6), legally (1:6-7), and even vitally (2:6-7).
    8. The Father and Spirit have roles in salvation, but the Redeemer is Christ by death!
    9. Many love Romans 8:1 – now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus!
    10. You should love Colossians 2:10 – ye are complete in Him! All things are yours!
    11. Why no separation from God’s love? Because it is in Christ Jesus (Rom 8:38-39).
    12. t is true we are baptized into Jesus Christ to put Him on (Gal 3:27), but this comes long after and it comes only as a result of God choosing us and viewing us in Him.
    13. Then daily we are to live as in Him, with changed lives (II Cor 5:17; Rom 13:14).
    14. For more about being in Christ.
  3. Redeem is an economic or financial term … to buy back a thing from another’s claim.
    1. God fully revealed His grace by divers expressions, or facets, for salvation e.g. justification, reconciliation, pardon, atonement, sanctification, adoption, etc.
    2. Redemption is a grand gospel theme (Job 19:25-27; Gal 3:13; Tit 2:14; Rev 5:9).
    3. Many examples of redemption occur in the Bible (Ex 13:12-16; 21:8; Nu 3:39-51).
    4. Real estate transactions require extensive deed and title research to avoid any liens; you have a lien against you – a written claim from the courts of heaven – death!
    5. There is no expiration of this charge and lien, because it demands eternal death.
    6. God had the claim against us – sinners must die (Gen 2:17; Ezek 18:4; Rom 6:23).
    7. But the criminal charge or eternal lien against the Holy and High King of heaven has been lifted, has been paid in full, by the death of His only, His beloved, Son.
    8. We have more in Christ than redemption, as the next verses teach, but it is crucial.
    9. For facets of salvation.
  4. Our redemption in Christ Jesus is not an offer or possibility, but rather a finished fact.
    1. The text says we already have it, consistent with what has been said before (1:3-6).
    2. When Jesus entered the holy place with His blood, He obtained it for us (He 9:12).
    3. His death was the means of it; there is nothing else to be done (Heb 9:15; Tit 2:14).
    4. Jesus redeemed us from the curse of the Law by being cursed for us (Ga 3:13; 4:5).
    5. For more about what Jesus finished.
  5. The economic price to buy us back was the precious blood of Christ (I Peter 1:18-20).
    1. Usually silver and gold work for economic or financial payments, but not this one.
    2. Our Lord Christ’s blood is mentioned often, but its merit and value is in His death.
    3. If Arminians are right, a general atonement depends entirely on money to missions.
    4. Redemption is not just possible – Jesus obtained it for all given to Him (Heb 9:12).
    5. You were bought with a price, so you should glorify God twice (I Cor 6:19-20).
    6. For much more about blood redemption.
    7. For blood redemption viewed as a dowry.
  6. Redemption includes and may be viewed as forgiveness of sins by Christ’s payment.
    1. God chose to forgive us in view of the legal value of Christ’s death (I Peter 1:2).
    2. Charges, debts, or liens forgiven are those expunged by the redemption payment.
    3. The condemned criminal is redeemed from punishment once crimes are paid for.
    4. Jesus paid the full penalty for our sins by death on the cross, thus redeeming us.
    5. God forgives you practically by faithfulness and justness … to this price (I Jn 1:9).
    6. With sins forgiven, and no charge left, Satan could no longer accuse (Rev 12:10).
    7. We have more in Christ than forgiveness, as the next verses teach, but it is crucial.
    8. For more about forgiveness of sins.
  7. God’s rich grace was the basis for the plan and payment of redemption from your sins.
    1. According to: ‘In a manner agreeing with, consistent with, or answering to; agreeably to. [Note the similarity to the explanation for our predestination in 1:5.]
    2. What is riches of His grace here, He called glory of His grace (1:6), but He also called it the riches of His glory (Rom 9:23). All glory to God and His rich grace!
    3. Why would a holy God forgive rebel enemies’ sins? – to show His rich grace (2:7)!
    4. Grace is demerited favor … for this improved definition takes sins into account.
    5. It is incredible grace that the Judge of sinners would kill His Son for their freedom.
    6. If you say your sins are too many or too great, His grace is greater (Rom 5:20-21).
    7. This is not practical forgiveness by confession, but legal forgiveness based on God’s acceptance of Christ’s blood payment for your sins (Ps 32:1-6; I John 1:9).
  8. For whom is this great work of redemption and forgiveness by God’s rich grace? We!
    1. We totally deny and reject universal salvation that is infecting the Christian world.
    2. We totally deny and reject a mere offer or opportunity of eternal salvation to God.
    3. We fully agree and declare God chose some and gave them to Jesus their Surety.
    4. The words were written to Ephesian saints, not mere Ephesians. Are you faithful?
  9. For much more of riches in Christ.

8 Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence;

  1. Note wherein that keeps you true to salvation being based in the riches of God’s grace.
    1. See also the connection of wherein to God’s grace in the two clauses of Eph 1:6.
    2. God’s grace is the basis, cause, and source of His electing plan to save the elect.
    3. Jesus Christ is the means, person, and way by which election by grace is effective.
  2. God has abounded toward us in the glorious plan and execution of saving His elect.
    1. Sin abounds in man’s case, but His grace did much more abound (Ro 5:15,20-21).
    2. The purpose of the law was to show sin’s exceeding sinfulness (Ro 3:19-20; 7:13).
    3. It drove men to Christ, for only He could undo sins’ abounding offence (Gal 3:24).
    4. Paul wrote God’s grace was exceeding abundant in Christ (I Ti 1:14-16; Tit 3:4-7).
    5. Remember to depart from iniquity, for abounding grace is no license (Rom 6:1-2).
    6. The rich grace of His forgiveness in Jesus abounds in glorious news for the elect.
    7. The severe complication of an infinitely holy and just God will to manifest wrath required extensive wisdom and prudence with not compromise but only His glory!
  3. God’s wisdom and prudence is gloriously shown in designing and executing salvation.
    1. Wisdom is the power of right judgment and God used it in creation (Prov 8:22-31).
    2. Prudence carefully considers circumstances to identify wise solutions (Prov 8:12).
    3. Paul proclaimed exclamatory praise of God’s wisdom in salvation (Rom 11:33-36).
    4. How could a very just God justify sinners (Ex 34:7; Nah 1:3)? In Christ (Ro 3:26)!
    5. Natural men despise the gospel: the elect see God’s power and wisdom (I Co 1:24).
    6. Elect angels marvel at His salvation wisdom (Eph 3:10; I Pet 1:12; Rev 5:11-12).
    7. Do not forget Isaiah’s prophecy that Jesus Christ would deal prudently (Is 52:13).
    8. Jesus is the great wisdom of God in the plan of salvation (I Cor 1:30; I Tim 3:16).
    9. God’s wisdom in salvation is hidden in the gospel for the elect only (I Cor 2:6-10).
    10. It is not … we have wisely and prudently availed ourselves of an offer in Christ!
  4. Can you think of ways in which God’s wisdom and prudence abound in saving men?
    1. Determine all these things before creating? It was not a mere remedy or response!
    2. Prepare the lake of fire and heavenly kingdom for destinations of angels and men.
    3. Let His archenemy the devil have some success to magnify the victory of a Man!
    4. Satisfy His justice while both displaying His wrath and power and glorious grace!
    5. Save men but pass over angels, far superior creatures (they desire to look into it)!
    6. Send His only begotten Son as the substitutionary sacrifice for His own justice!
    7.  A virgin birth to take Adam’s genealogy out of the way and replace him with God!
    8. Allow a scam trial that ends with sinful men convicting/condemning Innocence!
    9. A crucifixion death to involve much greater pain, suffering, and public shame!
    10. Resurrection from the dead to remedy the fact that the firstborn brother was dead!
    11. A life in this world in order to be a great high priest that can very well relate to us!
    12. Promote Him far above the greater angels and universe for His life and death!
    13. Adopt, not just forgive or justify, sinful men to be His own sons in the universe!
    14. Give an inheritance of the universe to those sons as joint-heirs with Jesus Christ!
    15. Resurrect even their bodies from the grave … I shew you a mystery (I Cor 15:51)!
    16. Let the angels be their servants, thought greater in power and might than men!
    17. Inform His children secretly of their salvation by gospel preaching (I Cor 1:21,24)!
    18. Identified Rome and the mystery of iniquity is prophetic (II Thess 2:7; Rev 17:5,7).
    19. Identified, explained, and applied the stars and candlesticks of churches (Re 1:20).
    20. A portion of elect Israel was blinded to the gospel for a great mystery (Ro 11:25).
  5. Did God abound in wisdom and prudence saving us, or did He also give both to us?
    1. There is no doubt God used great wisdom and prudence in designing our salvation.
    2. There is no doubt that God’s wisdom and prudence in such design are meant here.
    3. But we know God gave us abounding wisdom and prudence to know such things.
    4. For the next verse describes God making known to us the mystery of His own will.
    5. The mind of God or Christ has been revealed to us and we also have it (I Cor 2:16).
    6. Paul wrote of God’s exceeding abundant grace to gave faith and love (I Tim 1:14).
  6. God has abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence through gospel revelation.
    1. Remember the incontrovertibly great mystery of godliness in the gospel (I Ti 3:16).
    2. The princes of this world knew not the hidden wisdom of the gospel (I Cor 2:6-10).
    3. Recall the supremacy of the New Testament revelation over the Old (II Co 3:4-11).
    4. Your conversion as Gentiles is a known mystery that was hid from ages (Col 1:26).
    5. Recall things Jesus taught His disciples unknown to men before (Matt 13:16-17).
    6. Consider how this greater revelation by Jesus fulfilled a prophecy (Matt 11:33-36).
    7. You know incredible events and facts the wisest natural men cannot even imagine.
    8. Zophar exalted God by His secrets and His twice-known knowledge (Job 11:5-12).
    9. God revealed secrets to Abraham (Sodom), Isaiah (Cyrus), and Daniel (many).
    10. On the other end of revelation of knowledge and truth is God blinding men, (Ex 14:4; Luke 8:18; John 9:39; 12:36-41; Rom 1:28; II Thes 2:11-12; Matt 11:25-27).
    11. For gospel’s hidden wisdom.
    12. God blinds men.
  7. How has God abounded toward us in giving us all wisdom and prudence about Him?
    1. It is by His Spirit in regeneration and then revealing work (I Cor 2:10; Eph 1:17).
    2. It is by His Scriptures read, searched, and preached (Rom 16:26; II Tim 3:16-17).
    3. He opens our eyes, teaches us while we sleep, and countless other nudges to learn.
    4. Let us be thankful and obedient to truth for Him to give more (Luke 8:18; Jn 7:17).
  8. The apostles, especially Paul, knew things previously not known (2:11-22; 3:1-12).

9 Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself:

  1. God not only did or will do marvelous things, but He also kindly revealed them to us.
    1. The opening clause indicates that God revealed His wisdom and prudence to us.
    2. Having made known unto us are words of revelation, or you would know nothing.
    3. God’s purpose and grace are eternal, but He brought them to light (II Tim 1:9-10).
    4. Apostles and prophets of Jesus Christ were given the knowledge first (Eph 3:1-6).
    5. Reason, rationalization, relationships, or ritual are all inferior to God’s revelation.
    6. The infinite God has revealed to us decisions of His divine will in eternal decrees.
    7. We in the New Testament know far more than brethren under the Old Testament.
    8. Prophets and righteous men desired to know things His apostles knew (Mat 13:17).
    9. Paul was given special wisdom about Gentile conversions (Ep 3:1-6; Col 1:25-28).
    10. Hidden wisdom of mysteries.
  2. If a mystery is made known, it is no longer a mystery to some, but it once was to all!
    1. God does not owe any man truth, but He reveals the truth due to His own purposes.
    2. The word mystery is used in the N.T. for those things hidden from all natural men.
    3. The word mystery is used in the N.T. for those things previously hidden from men.
    4. The mysteries of the kingdom of heaven are not mysteries to saints, because the N.T. spells them out rather plainly for those who read and study the Bible.
    5. Paul called Gentile conversions a mystery of ages now made manifest (Col 1:26).
    6. The mystery of God’s will is the whole plan of salvation, including what follows.
    7. It is the Spirit of wisdom and revelation that reveals the truth to us (Eph 1:17).
  3. The mystery of His will is right in the verses before you regarding your salvation.
    1. God has revealed to us secrets of the universe – His purpose in creation/salvation.
    2. Spiritual blessings in heavenly places … was God’s choice to save men by Christ.
    3. Election to a covenant union with Christ … which is His choice to save some men.
    4. Predestinated to adoption as sons … according to the good pleasure of His will.
    5. Our inheritance is also by predestination according to His all-pervasive will (1:11).
    6. Election and predestination are more surely great mysteries of His everlasting will.
    7. And so is Christ … and adoption … and inheritance … and resurrection … etc.
    8. See Paul write, Behold, I shew you a mystery … of resurrection (I Cor 15:51)!
    9. Hidden wisdom of mysteries.
  4. Salvation is according to God’s good pleasure, which He hath purposed in Himself.
    1. Salvation is by God’s pleasure/purpose, without regard to either by rebel enemies.
    2. Jesus said of God’s sovereignty, Because it seemed good in thy sight (Matt 11:26).
    3. There is nothing you, any man, or all men can do to alter God’s pleasure/purpose.
    4. God made all things for Himself, and He will get pleasure from them (Rev 4:11).

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:

  1. The dispensation of the fulness of times is the era of Christ and the gospel (Gal 4:2-4).
    1. A dispensation refers to administration, office, ordering, or management of things.
    2. There are three dispensations: Adam to Moses to Christ to eternity (Rom 5:12-14).
    3. The dispensation we are now in is the last times (I Pe 1:20; I John 2:18; Jude 1:18).
    4. It is also called last days by the Spirit (Acts 2:17; II Tim 3:1; Heb 1:2; II Pet 3:3).
    5. A final shaking brought in the New Testament, and it is the last (Heb 12:26-28).
    6. There is no carnal millennium kingdom, which would be another dispensation.
    7. When Paul wrote Jews, he held out nothing better than the gospel (Heb 12:22-24).
    8. Gospel millennium.
  2. God is gathering together His whole family in Jesus Christ according to His promise.
    1. Paul shortly identified the family of God that exists in heaven and earth (3:14-15).
    2. Jacob first prophesied Christ’s work when giving Judah’s blessing (Genesis 49:10).
    3. Jesus Himself confirmed this great work when describing His sheep (John 10:16).
    4. Until we are conceived and born, we do not exist for regeneration or gathering, though we most certainly existed in covenant (eternal) and on the cross (legal).
    5. Regeneration unites us to Christ vitally, so we can sit in heaven with Him (2:6-7).
    6. So certain is this union, we are connected to the general assembly (Heb 12:22-24).
    7. Keep the five phases of salvation in mind to fully grasp all our unions with Christ.
  3. The universe and its players revolve around what God will do through Jesus Christ.
    1. God will gather together His elect into a glorious family and kingdom for eternity.
    2. Jesus will come again for the last phase of this gathering – raising of bodies (1:14).
    3. There will be nothing amiss or missing or any adversity or enemies in that world.
    4. Jesus is Head of the church – all saints dead, living, or yet future (Heb 12:22-24).
    5. Jesus is Head of all principalities and powers – angels good and bad (I Pet 3:22).
    6. All things, not just elect men and angels, but the material universe, will be united.
    7. Jesus will reign over all things … all angels, all men, all the elect, all creatures.
    8. There will be restoration of all things to original purity in a new heaven and earth.
  4. Notice twice in this verse there is further reference to our being in Christ and in Him.
    1. Jesus Christ is the mighty King and blessed Potentate that will bring all together.
    2. Jesus Christ is the mighty King and blessed Potentate that will rule over all things.
    3. Note men, angels, and all creatures worshipping God and Jesus Christ (Re 5:9-12).
    4. All creatures and creations will be under Him to be all in all (Ep 1:23; I Co 15:28).

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:

  1. Again, we are reminded of our in Christ relationship on which all blessings depend.
    1. Go back to 1:5, where our redemption and forgiveness is introduced by in whom.
    2. The adverb also describes the blessing of heaven in addition to previous blessings.
    3. The blessing of heaven is in Jesus Christ as are all the legal and practical blessings.
  2. Those who have heaven as their destiny were predestinated to it by a sovereign God.
    1. Predestination is God’s determining power of your destiny and destination before.
    2. Heaven is not offered to men by the gospel; the elect have obtained it in Christ.
    3. Notice that predestination in this context is first of sonship and then inheritance.
    4. Notice in Romans 8:29-30 that predestination is to sonship and then glorification.
    5. If you do not like predestination, then you need to try another religion’s holy book.
    6. We are predestinarian Baptists, because we believe, embrace, trust predestination.
  3. What is the inheritance of God’s elect? What is not in it? They shall inherit all things.
    1. Get this down well … whatever Jesus inherited … we shall inherit such with Him.
    2. We are joint-heirs with Christ, thus His promise about even His throne (Rev 3:21).
    3. Paul warned not to exalt men, for the basest elect child owns all things (I Co 3:21).
    4. God declared near the end of His revelation to John we inherit all things (Re 21:7).
    5. The kingdom we shall inherit was prepared before the world began (Matt 25:34).
    6. Our inheritance is incorruptible, undefiled, does not fade, and reserved (I Pet 1:4).
    7. House and riches are the inheritance of fathers; what of God our Father (Pr 19:14)!
    8. When on the job tomorrow, remember this reward of the inheritance (Col 3:24).
    9. This chapter starts with election and mentions inheritance three times (1:11,14,18).
  4. God works all things after the counsel of His own will, especially spiritual blessings.
    1. The Spirit successively used different descriptions of God and His choice to save.
    2. For predestination to adoption (1:5) … according to the good pleasure of his will.
    3. For made accepted in the beloved (1:6) … to the praise of the glory of his grace.
    4. For redemption and forgiveness (1:7) … according to the riches of his grace.
    5. For our revelation (1:9) … his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself.
    6. For our inheritance (1:11) … the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will.
    7. For our trust in Christ (1:12) … that we should be to the praise of his glory.
    8. For sealing until redemption of possession (1:14) … unto the praise of his glory.
    9. These repetitions prove God saved men in such a way that no flesh should glory in His presence, but rather those that glory should glory only in Him (I Cor 1:29-31).
  5. There is no event in the universe that He does not fully manage and use to His glory.
    1. He has not been surprised by any event at anytime by any creature, including Eden.
    2. He is able to take the evil acts of men and use them for His own glory (Is 10:5-15).
    3. See also Daniel 4:35; P 76:10; Prov 16:4; Acts 2:23; 4:27-28; 15:18; Deut 29:29.
    4. We do not allow for any event in the universe to be outside His rule in any manner.
    5. He did not create sin, cause sin, input sin, or push sin … all sinners do so willingly.
  6. God’s dominion.

12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.

  1. Paul referred to himself, other apostles, and Jews who first believed on Jesus Christ.
    1. The gospel was first to the Jews, and only after that to Gentiles (Ro 1:16; Ac 1:8).
    2. The Ephesians, being across the Mediterranean from Israel, trusted later (1:13).
    3. Paul knew about election and his later learning of it by the gospel (II Tim 1:9-10).
    4. Trusting Christ, or believing on Christ, is the means by which we prove election.
    5. God did not elect believers, but believers show that God eternally elected them.
  2. There is a very real sense in which this verse is connected all the way back to 1:8-9.
    1. Verses 1:10-11 are separated by colons from the rest of this long sentence 1:7-12.
    2. The intervening matter is God gathering His kingdom in Christ and its inheritance.
    3. It was verses 1:8-9 that told God’s abundant grace revealing wisdom and prudence.
  3. God’s glory gets all the praise by His salvation of us from election to glorification.
    1. Your purpose for existence – your destiny as God’s son – is the praise of His glory.
    2. This is one of the most precious thoughts for your worldview and worship of Him.
    3. All doctrine and practice by a church and the rest of your life is for and to this goal.
  4. If God has done all He can for all men, then trusting in Christ would be to our glory.
    1. The modern Arminian scheme claims God has done everything equally for all men.
    2. The only difference according to their heresy of men in heaven and hell is freewill.
    3. Therefore, each man that trusts in Christ deserves the full praise for his salvation.
    4. Therefore, God does not give wisdom and prudence, but man’s wisdom and prudence give himself to God and distinguishes himself from all other foolish men.
  5. It is only by the electing purpose of God and the regenerating power of the Holy Ghost that gives any man the wisdom and prudence to believe on Jesus Christ.
  6. We have trusted in Christ … do you trust in Him this morning … Is He your all in all?
    1. We trust and rejoice … Jesus Christ is God’s only Son by miraculous virgin birth!
    2. We trust and rejoice … Jesus Christ is the only Savior and hope of our redemption!
    3. We trust and rejoice … Jesus Christ died a literal, physical death 1,984 years ago!
    4. We trust and rejoice … Jesus Christ died as a Substitute by imputation before God!
    5. We trust and rejoice … Jesus Christ was buried and rose from death in three days!
    6. We trust and rejoice … Jesus Christ lives in heaven with God to intercede for us!
    7. We trust and rejoice … Jesus Christ is coming again in His body to claim us all!
    8. We trust and rejoice … Jesus Christ will not lose a single one of us God gave Him!
    9. We trust and rejoice … Jesus Christ is exalted by a simple meal of bread and wine!
    10. We trust and rejoice … Jesus Christ will own us before His Father as His brethren!


  1. The union the elect have with Jesus Christ is the basis, foundation, and reason for every blessing.
  2. Redemption and the forgiveness of sins are legal blessings by being in Jesus Christ for His death.
  3. The wisdom of God’s design and execution of man’s redemption is unsearchable in every respect.
  4. Not only has God saved us in Jesus Christ, but He has clearly revealed this fabulous blessing to us.
  5. Jesus Christ is gathering together the whole family of God for the eternal blessings of His kingdom.
  6. Our election in Jesus Christ and His death for us also purchased our eternal inheritance (Heb 9:15).
  7. Our God works all things after the counsel of His will, especially all aspects of our eternal salvation.
  8. The great goal and purpose at all times is the praise of God’s glorious grace (Ep 1:12; 2:7; Ro 9:23).

For Further Study:

  1. Sermon Outline: Eternal Union with Christ
  2. Sermon Outline: Redemption through His Blood
  3. Sermon Outline: Particular Redemption of a Peculiar People
  4. Sermon Outline: The Blood Dowry
  5. Sermon Outline: The Facets of Salvation
  6. Sermon Outline: Forgiveness of Sins
  7. Sermon Outline: Unsearchable Riches of Christ
  8. Sermon Outline: Mysteries of Hidden Wisdom
  9. Sermon Outline: The Great Mystery of Godliness
  10. Sermon Outline: The Gospel Millennium
  11. Sermon Outline: The Creation Groaneth
  12. Sermon Outline: The Dominion of God