Study Guides

God Desires . . .

Since we don’t have a lot of time in our online meetings and now that we are moving into the “so-what,” living side of the letter, I think I’ll begin asking some application questions. Eph 4:1-16 is—at least in one sense—the focal point of the letter, since it contains the first and main “Request” of […]

A Refrigerator-Posted Prayer

One of the most famous, refrigerator-posted, prayers of the Bible is found in Ephesians 3:14-21, and I understand why: it’s a powerfully worded prayer that asks for things every Christian wants, as it reminds us that God is able to do much more than anything we can ask or think: things like (1) being strengthened […]

The Calling . . . the Inheritance . . . the Power (Part 2)

Last week I suggested that Paul deals with the 3 explicitly listed themes (1:18-19) in order in Eph 2:1-3:13. The “triadic themes” of Ephesians are developed, I think, like this: 2:1-10: the hope of his calling 2:11-22: the glorious riches of his inheritance among the saints 3:1-13: the surpassing greatness of his power upon us […]

The Calling . . . The Inheritance . . . The Power

In Eph 1:18-19, Paul sets forth 3 topics that he wants the audience to come to understand by reading/hearing his letter: (1) the hope of his calling, (2), the riches of his inheritance among the saints, and (3) the surpassing greatness of his power upon us who believed . . . So what do these […]

Extra, Extra: “. . . we who were the first to hope in Christ”

This is “extra.” So no worries if it seems a little too academic. But give it a try. You might find it interesting. Classical Greek Rhetoric taught speakers how to make good introductions for their speeches. The primary goals were to gain the favor of the audience, often by praising them, and to bring up […]

The Challenge of Reconciliation

You have to write a speech. There are two people who don’t like each other, or two groups of people who are “feuding” and don’t get along very well for some reason—people who have had a long history of hostility, called each other names (how about “the uncircumcision” or “foreskins!”, e.g.), look down their noses […]

“Get into Shape” or “Make a Map”

The Week 1 Ephesians Study Guide has two main goals: (1) become familiar with the content of Ephesians (by reading it several times) and (2) discover the basic 3-part shape of the text. Most genres of written communication have some sort of Introduction and some sort of Conclusion, which means they have a beginning, a […]