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9 January 2019
Let’s join together in prayer with the third of our five passages from Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians. Once we were without hope, but in Jesus we have been brought near to God!
Today’s post is the third in a series of five posts. Follow our blog this week and pray along:
- Day 1: Overwhelming blessing
- Day 2: Available power
- Day 3: Supernatural unity
- Day 4: Prepared for growth
- Day 5: No no-go areas
Supernatural unity | Ephesians 2:11–22
Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called ‘uncircumcised’ by those who call themselves ‘the circumcision’ (which is done in the body by human hands - remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who were once far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ. (Ephesians 2:11–13)
Once we weren’t God’s people, says Paul; there was a wall between us and God, and a wall between us and God’s people Israel. We were ‘without hope and without God’. But look at what has happened through the cross of Jesus: we ‘who were once far away have been brought near’! The obvious thing to do is to praise God for all that he has given us in Jesus. You could start like this:
Father, I see how bleak my situation was before I came to know Jesus…
And Father, I thank you for the way you’ve brought me near to you…
Time to read more?
• Read Ephesians 2:14–18 in your Bible
Jesus, says Paul, has created a supernatural unity: ‘he has made the two groups one and destroyed the barrier’. He has made ‘one new humanity’ out of Jews and Gentiles who believe in Jesus, his purpose being to ‘reconcile both of them to God through the cross’. Through Jesus, believing Jews and believing Gentiles ‘have access to the Father by one Spirit’.
As you look at verses 14–18, take time to praise God for this supernatural unity. You could start like this:
Father, through Jesus and his cross you have done something wonderful…
• Read Ephesians 2:19–22 in your Bible
Do you see how Paul describes the church? We’re God’s family and God’s building, ‘built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone’. Try to let this sink in: we are ‘a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit’, and ‘a holy temple in the Lord’! Doesn’t this make us want to pray for the unity of God’s church and that we will experience God’s presence in 2019? Begin like this:
Father, I praise you that you have created the church of Jesus and that I am part of it. Especially I thank you because we are…