Pamphlet #5175 KCEphesians15
Once again, notice that this has "been kept secret from the foundation of the world".
Today we complete the great Book of Ephesians, written by that most excellent teacher and apostle, Paul, from prison in Rome.
Paul is masterful in using analogies, taking that "which is created, seen" to illustrate that which is "from above, not seen", i.e. spiritual.
He even draws the analogy that while he is temporarily imprisoned by man, he is in reality a "prisoner" of the Lord Jesus Christ, bound by Him, to do His will and His service.
What a great attitude to have in jail!
We have learned in this letter to the Ephesians about the great "mysteries" Paul spoke of, which have been hidden from the beginning, from before the foundation of this world age.
We learned in chapter one, verse four, that God's elect were chosen, predestinated, in "the world that then was", at the time of Satan's rebellion and overthrow, before the destruction of Gen 1:2, as written of by Peter in 2 Pet. 3:6.
The "three world ages", i.e. the world that then was, the world that is now (the flesh age), and the earth age to come, still remain a mystery to those without eyes to see and ears to hear.
Paul also revealed the great mystery concerning the church and the unity of His body, and how it is jointly fitted together into one.
He used the analogy of marriage to illustrate that oneness, while at the same time giving instruction in how to be joyous and loving and submissive one to another.
Then, while giving us admonition about our personal conduct and outside relationships, we learned about the children of disobedience, who are the tares of the Parable of the Tares, which Jesus Christ Himself explained in Mat. 13.
Once again, notice that this has "been kept secret from the foundation of the world".
All these things spake Jesus unto the multitude in parables; and without a parable spake he not unto them:  That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, I will open my mouth in parables; I will utter things which have been kept secret from the foundation of the world.
Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field.
He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man;  The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one;  The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels.
This is extremely important, because Paul is about to tell us how to put on the "equipment" necessary to do battle.
Don't you think it would be a good idea to know who the enemy is before we go to war?
Here, then, is Paul giving his final instructions:
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.
It is He Who has ALL power both in heaven and on earth.
And through Him we have power over ALL our enemies.
Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.
Now you have to possess enough common sense to know that Christ is not talking about stomping snakes and scorpions in the desert with your hiking boots.
Who was that old serpent in the garden?
Jesus is talking about our enemies, Satan and the tares, his children.
So, Paul says:
Eph. 6:11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
We are Christian soldiers and we KNOW that we have the power over ALL our enemies, including the head serpent.
So we win!
Why then do so many teach that we
are going to "fly" up into the air to avoid confronting the enemy?
(I speak of the rapture theory)
Why would we want to run when we have the victory?
Beats me. I have a little story I tell about this:
Once upon a time there was a kingdom ruled by a righteous king. But alas, as with all righteous kings, he had an archenemy who was very powerful and possessed the forces of a mighty army.
The righteous king knew that someday his kingdom and its subjects would be attacked by this king of fierce countenance. So in preparation of the inevitable, and being wiser than his serpentine opponent, he set his most faithful and loyal subjects upon the gates of the cities to "watch" for signs of this vile king's approach.
The righteous king then instructed his elect corps of mighty and valiant knights and warriors, men of great courage, to put on their suits of armor and be prepared to take a stand and defend the kingdom against the impending onslaught of this devouring, locust-like army. The king's elect had NO FEAR of death or personal injury in defending their loved ones, their homeland, the kingdom that they loved so dearly.
Then the momentous day finally came and the sixth trumpeter sounded the alarm of the approaching desolator. The righteous king's elect army of well prepared and well trained troops were all set to squish some locusts, stomp on some scorpions and kick some dragon..... BUT WAIT! WHAT'S THIS?
The righteous king is pulling all his troops! He's telling them to retreat and run and save their own necks!
Sadly, the subjects of the kingdom were slaughtered brutally and mercilessly and there was a great needless loss of souls.
Would you respect a king who prepared his troops to fight, only to have them turn and run when things got HOT?
We Christians are NOT running!
Paul now makes it quite clear that the battle of the end time does not involve blood and guts.
 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
It seems they can't elevate their thinking above the flesh level.
 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
And that "evil day", when Satan, the false-christ, the little horn, etc., appears in person, is fast approaching.
 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;
This, of course, will help you to keep your spiritual pants up.
The breastplate covers your heart which should be in the right place, in righteousness.
 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
It was declared in the beginning:
It is declared in the Psalms:Genesis 15:1
After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.
It is declared in the Proverbs:Psalm 119:114
Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word.
Every word of God is pure: He is a shield unto them that put their trust in him.
Paul further explains in 1 Thes. that our helmet is our hope of salvation:Eph. 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
1 Thes. 5:8
But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.
It is the Word of God!
Here is reason the Word of God is so powerful:Rev. 1:16
And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength.
For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword,piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
Which would you rather have in a spiritual battle?
Eph. 6:18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
 And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel,
That didn't always make him popular.
Remember what happened to him on Mars Hill?
 For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.
We all should speak boldly,not as in "cocky" or as a "loud mouth", but as to the plain truth of God's Word, whether it pleases man or not.
 But that ye also may know my affairs, and how I do, Tychicus, a beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord, shall make known to you all things:
 Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that ye might know our affairs, and that he might comfort your hearts.
He closes with this prayer, remembering the saints, as he just stated in verse 18.
Let us all join with him.
 Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
 Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Amen.
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