Ephesians 3:11-l5 The Church Family v. 15
Here in Ephesians chapter 3 we read of the family of God! Who is in this whole family? Only those who have been adopted into this specific family! Galatians 4:4-4 "But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons." Thank God that the Lord Jesus Christ was sent to this earth and die on the cross that fallen man might be adopted into the family of God. There are two truths that we can learn from this adoption.
1. We are wanted
2Pe 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
2. We are Accepted
Eph 1:6 To the the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.
The O. T. would not accept the gentile into full fellowship but in Christ Jesus we are accepted into the fellowship of the family of God.
There is nothing in all the world that can compare with being in the family of God! I am glad that I am in. How about you! It is a blessed thing to be part of the family of God. Why?
I. We have Family Relationships
A. We have a Heavenly Father
Joh 20:17 Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.
Ro 8:15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
Php 4:20 Now unto God and our Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
1Th 3:13 To the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.
2Th 2:16 Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace,
1Ti 1:2 Unto Timothy, my own son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.
B. We have Brothers and sisters in Christ
Joh 11:52 And not for that nation only, but that also he should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad.
Ac 9:17 And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost.
II. We have Family Responsibilities
A. Responsibility of Love
1Th 4:9 But as touching brotherly love ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another.
Ro 12:10 Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;
B. Responsibility of Forgiveness
Mr 11:26 But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses.
Eph 4:32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.
Col 3:13 Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.
NOTE: Forbear means to endure/ to put up with
C. Responsibility of Mercy
Lu 6:36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.
D. Responsibility of Unification
1Co 1:10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.
E. Responsibility of Prayer
Jas 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
F. Responsibility of Encouragement
1Th 5:11 Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.
III. We have Family Resemblances (Romans 6:1-5)
NOTE: The Word likeness means "Resemblance".
Col 3:10 And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:
2Co 3:18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.
Ro 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
IV. We have Family Resources (Romans 8:31, 32)
A. We have help from our Father
NOTE: As an individual and as a church!
Ps 50:10 For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills.
Mt 6:8 Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.
Ps 37:25 I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.
B. We have help from the Brethren
I John 3:16-18, "Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him? My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth."
2Co 8:14 But by an equality, that now at this time your abundance may be a supply for their want, that their abundance also may be a supply for your want: that there may be equality:
James 2: 15, 16, " If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit?"
Ac 20:35 I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.
V. We WILL HAVE a Family Reunion I Thessalonians 4:13-18