Identity Issues Foolishness and Wisdom Ephesians 1:8

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1 Identity Issues Flishness and Wisdm Ephesians 1:8 The syntax and grammar here are difficult. The text may be saying 1 f 3 things: That Gd lavished his grace n us in His wisdm and understanding (that is it was His wisdm and understanding that pertains t ur frgiveness) (ESV) 7 In him we have redemptin thrugh his bld, the frgiveness f ur trespasses, accrding t the riches f his grace, 8 which he lavished upn us, in all wisdm and insight 9 making knwn t us the mystery f his will, accrding t his purpse, which he set frth in Christ (ESV) Paul is saying that when Gd lavished His grace upn His peple, it was nt a haphazard r illcnsidered actin His decisin t lavish His grace upn His peple by paying the cst f their redemptin in the death f His belved Sn was in accrd with His infinite capacity fr wisdm and understanding. 1 (True) Or it may be cnnecting the phrase t the next verse and Gd s having revealed t us the mystery f His will accrding t His wisdm and understanding (NASB) 7 In Him we have redemptin thrugh His bld, the frgiveness f ur trespasses, accrding t the riches f His grace 8 which He lavished n us. In all wisdm and insight 9 He made knwn t us the mystery f His will, accrding t His kind intentin which He purpsed in Him (NASB) Gd s making knwn t us the mystery f His will is an act f His wisdm and insight as Gd (True) Or, the text is saying that wisdm and understanding are part f Gds salvific gift t believers (NLT) 7 He is s rich in kindness and grace that he purchased ur freedm with the bld f his Sn and frgave ur sins. 8 He has shwered his kindness n us, alng with all wisdm and understanding. 9 Gd has nw revealed t us his mysterius plan regarding Christ, a plan t fulfill his wn gd pleasure. (NLT) Gd nt nly redeems us frm the pwer and penalty f sin with the precius bld f His Sn, but He als (in His kindness) gives us wisdm and understanding s that we might knw and live differently accrding t His plan (True) Thugh all 3 are generally true (r at least nt denied in Scripture); we take the latter rendering 1. Mst interpreters take the phrase this way Verse 9 is als speaking f a gift f revelatin frm Gd (Gd has nw revealed t us his mysterius plan) S there seems t be a cnnected theme here that Gd is giving us understanding that we previusly did nt have 3. Als, this is cnsistent with the way that Paul prayed fr the churches (Eph 1:16-17; Cl 1:9) 1 Frank Thielman, Baker Exegetical Cmmentary n the New Testament: Ephesians (Grand Rapids, MI.: Baker Academic, 2010), Thielman, Fr the majrity sense see Harld W. Hehner, An Exegetical Cmmentary: Ephesians (Grand Rapids, MI.: Baker Academic, 2010), Where he states 5 reasns why the prepsitinal phrase refers t believers as a result f Gd s grace rather than referring t thse attributes f Gd which cause His grace

2 Gd has nt nly lved us, chsen us, adpted us, redeemed us and lavished His kindness n us, but He has als given us wisdm and understanding. We must rely n the benefits f grace and als the benefits f wisdm and understanding t live well. In grace we realize that when we sin we are frgiven and secure t the glry f Gd Grace reveals t us ur utter sinfulness In wisdm we realize that ur freedm is nt fr urselves but that we might live t the glry f Gd Wisdm reveals t us ur utter flishness In understanding we discver r discern hw t live fr Gd s glry in every instance Understanding reveals t us ur utter recklessness Wisdm and understanding are part f the way Gd enables us t live hly lives Practical hliness & sanctificatin Thugh there are subtleties in the definitin f each f the 2 wrds, Scripture really uses them synnymusly (mst f the time) The use f a single idea by the expressin f tw wrds 4 Cf. It s nice and warm ut. r While being baptized in the cean, I was beaten and battered by the waves. The tw wrds mutually define each ther Wisdm and understanding are Scripture s way f speaking f that which we need t live right lives They bth refer t the right handling f the right thing at the right mment The ability t act apprpriately The ability t discern between right and wrng Because Gd des nt nly want us saved but als well; nt nly ging t heaven but als glrifying Him n earth; nt nly experiencing psitinal hliness but als practical hliness. S, He gives us wisdm and understanding. In fact, He lavishes it n us When we speak f lavish we speak f excess T lavish smething n smene is t shwer it n them T have way mre than enugh The verb lavished in the text is speaking f Gd s grace and kindness and wisdm and understanding It is in the past tense He has given us these things Gd has given us an excess f grace Has dealt with us with an excess f kindness We are getting this (we must get this) 4 A structure knwn as hendiadys ne idea thrugh tw wrds

3 But what we must als get is that Gd has given us wisdm and understanding t live rightly befre Him (Cf. the text) Ecclesiastes 2:26 Fr t the ne wh pleases him Gd has given wisdm and knwledge and jy Prverbs 2:6 Fr the Lrd grants wisdm!! Frm his muth cme knwledge and understanding. Thugh it has been given t us, we must grw in it and cultivate it (like the gspel) This is hw we are daily saved frm living accrding t ur wn flishness and fr ur wn glry S, Scripture beckns us Prverbs 9:6 Leave yur simple ways behind, and begin t live;! learn t use gd judgment. (I.e. wisdm and understanding) Prverbs 7:4 Lve wisdm like a sister;! make insight a belved member f yur family. Prverbs 4:7 Getting wisdm is the wisest thing yu can d!! And whatever else yu d, develp gd judgment. We are talking abut wisdm and understanding frm Gd (nt human r wrldly) there is a difference James 3: If yu are wise and understand Gd s ways, prve it by living an hnrable life, ding gd wrks with the humility that cmes frm wisdm. 14 But if yu are bitterly jealus and there is selfish ambitin in yur heart, dn t cver up the truth with basting and lying. 15 Fr jealusy and selfishness are nt Gd s kind f wisdm. Such things are earthly, unspiritual, and demnic. 16 Fr wherever there is jealusy and selfish ambitin, there yu will find disrder and evil f every kind. 17 But the wisdm frm abve is first f all pure. It is als peace lving, gentle at all times, and willing t yield t thers. It is full f mercy and gd deeds. It shws n favritism and is always sincere. 18 And thse wh are peacemakers will plant seeds f peace and reap a harvest f righteusness. Prverbs 3:5-8 5 Trust in the Lrd with all yur heart; d nt depend n yur wn understanding.! 6 Seek his will in all yu d, and he will shw yu which path t take. 7 Dn t be impressed with yur wn wisdm. Instead, fear the Lrd and turn away frm evil.! 8 Then yu will have healing fr yur bdy and strength fr yur bnes. Scripture prmises a different quality f life fr thse wh practice Gdly wisdm and understanding Prverbs 3:13 Jyful is the persn wh finds wisdm,! the ne wh gains understanding. Fr wisdm is mre prfitable than silver, and her wages are better than gld. Prverbs 16:16 Hw much better t get wisdm than gld,!

4 and gd judgment than silver! Prverbs 10:23 Ding wrng is fun fr a fl,! but living wisely brings pleasure t the sensible. Jyful, better, pleasurable living! Where des it start? Prverbs 9:10 Fear f the Lrd is the fundatin f wisdm.! Knwledge f the Hly One results in gd judgment. The fear f the Lrd and the knwledge f the Hly One Revere, study and get t knw Gd We esteem ur selves t much (live fr ur wn glry) We are distracted by s many things ther than Gd (idlatry) And yet, by His kindness Gd has drawn us t repentance (Rmans 2:4) S seek the Lrd and His wisdm and understanding Jb 28:28 The fear f the Lrd is true wisdm;! t frsake evil is real understanding. And frsake evil and pursue the wisdm f Gd fr the Here is hw we d this (Scripture, prayer, cmmunity) Scripture Isaiah 45:19 I, the Lrd, speak nly what is true! and declare nly what is right. 2 Timthy 3:15 Yu have been taught the hly Scriptures frm childhd, and they have given yu the wisdm t receive the salvatin that cmes by trusting in Christ Jesus. Psalm 119: Yur cmmands make me wiser than my enemies,! fr they are my cnstant guide.! 99 Yes, I have mre insight than my teachers,! fr I am always thinking f yur laws.! 100 I am even wiser than my elders,!fr I have kept yur cmmandments.! 101 I have refused t walk n any evil path,! s that I may remain bedient t yur wrd.! 102 I haven t turned away frm yur regulatins,! fr yu have taught me well.! 103 Hw sweet yur wrds taste t me;!they are sweeter than hney.! 104 Yur cmmandments give me understanding;!n wnder I hate every false way f life. 105 Yur wrd is a lamp t guide my feet and a light fr my path. Prayer

5 Jeremiah 33:3 Call t me and I will answer yu and tell yu great and unsearchable things yu d nt knw. 2 Chrnicles 1:10 Give me the wisdm and knwledge t lead them prperly, fr wh culd pssibly gvern this great peple f yurs? Psalm 90:12 Teach us t realize the brevity f life,! s that we may grw in wisdm. Psalm 119:169 O Lrd, listen t my cry; give me the discerning mind yu prmised. Ephesians 1:16 b -17 I pray fr yu cnstantly, asking Gd, the glrius Father f ur Lrd Jesus Christ, t give yu spiritual wisdm and insight s that yu might grw in yur knwledge f Gd. James 1:5 If yu need wisdm, ask ur generus Gd, and he will give it t yu. He will nt rebuke yu fr asking. Cmmunity Prverbs 15:22 Plans g wrng fr lack f advice;! many advisers bring success. Clssians 3:16 Let the message abut Christ, in all its richness, fill yur lives. Teach and cunsel each ther with all the wisdm he gives. Hebrews 3:13 Yu must warn each ther every day s that nne f yu will be deceived by sin and hardened against Gd. Cf. The Bk f Acts Nt ding these things (prayer, scripture, cmmunity)? Then yu are minimizing yur capacity t experience the new life f Jesus Blwing it! Yu are shwing yurself t be flish even thugh Gd has ffered yu wisdm! Prverbs 26:12 There is mre hpe fr fls than fr peple wh think they are wise. Isaiah 47:10 Yu felt secure in yur wickedness. N ne sees me, yu said. But yur wisdm and knwledge have led yu astray Jeremiah 4:22 My peple are flish and d nt knw me, says the Lrd. They are stupid children wh have n understanding. They are clever enugh at ding wrng, but they have n idea hw t d right! Hear Scripture exhrt yu t live rightly befre Gd! Matthew 7:24 Anyne wh listens t my teaching and fllws it is wise, like a persn wh builds a huse n slid rck. Hsea 14:

6 Let thse wh are wise understand these things. Let thse with discernment listen carefully. The paths f the Lrd are true and right, and righteus peple live by walking in them. Psalm 119:34; 73 Give me understanding and I will bey yur instructins; I will put them int practice with all my heart. Yu made me; yu created me. Nw give me the sense t fllw yur cmmands. Give me the sense t fllw yur cmmands. In light f Gd s lve and grace and kindness tward us wh deserve His wrath and judgment, we must see it as true wisdm t live fr Him 2 Crinthians 5:14-15 Christ s lve cntrls us. Since we believe that Christ died fr all, we als believe that we have all died t ur ld life. He died fr everyne s that thse wh receive his new life will n lnger live fr themselves. Instead, they will live fr Christ, wh died and was raised fr them. Living fr Gd s glry because f Gd s lve! Greek Schlar Kenneth Wuest explains the cncept f Christ s lve cntrlling us Fr the lve which Christ has fr me presses n me frm all sides, hlding me t ne end and prhibiting me frm cnsidering any ther, wrapping itself arund me in tenderness, giving me and impelling mtive. 5 In the face f kindness and lve we must see sin as it is t have been frgiven s much and then cntinue t pursue sin is t spit in the face f the Redeemer! In Scripture, when Gd s peple sin He uses wrds life rebellin (Lev. 16:21), defiance (1 Kings 13:21) and despising (2 Samuel 12:9-10) t describe ur actins against Him Hw can we, wh have been chsen, adpted, lved, redeemed and shwn excessive grace and kindness Rebel against, defy and despise s great a lver!?!?! We must wise up and gain understanding Ephesians 4:30 and 5:15 D nt bring srrw t Gd s Hly Spirit by the way yu live. Remember, he has identified yu as his wn, guaranteeing that yu will be saved n the day f redemptin. S be careful hw yu live. Dn t live like fls, but like thse wh are wise. The way we d this is t pursue Jesus (Cf. Scripture, prayer, cmmunity) Clssians 2:3 In Him lie hidden all the treasures f wisdm and knwledge. 1 Crinthians 1:24 Christ is the pwer f Gd and the wisdm f Gd Dn t set yur heart and mind n anything less than Christ Watch yur heart every time it trusts in and learns frm anything else If Christ is ur wisdm Are we listening t Christ as ur wisdm? Are we learning f Christ as ur wisdm? Are we leaning n Christ as ur wisdm? Are we enjying Christ as the surce f all true wisdm and life? Maybe yu need t repent f yur flish sins and cme t Christ the Wisdm f Gd 5 As quted in Jerry Bridges, The Discipline f Grace (Clrad Springs, CO.: Navpress, 2006),

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