the Week of Proper 3 / Ordinary 8
Grant's Commentary on the Bible Grant's Commentary
by L.M. Grant
Paul's epistle to the Ephesians brings us face to face with the magnificent counsels of the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ in reference to the exalted position and blessings of every child of God in the present age. God's purpose and the execution of it are seen to be absolutely divine, not in the least degree dependent on the character or works of those who are blessed, but on God's sovereign grace alone. Such grace freely gives them a present position and present blessings as high as Heaven is above the earth, a great contrast to the earthly inheritance and earthly blessing promised to Israel on condition of obedience to law. "Heavenly places" or "the heavenlies" are mentioned five times in the book, not as a future hope, but as a present possession. All is seen to be absolutely secured to the believer as being "in Christ." Christ, by virtue of His infinitely valuable work of redemption, has rightly inherited all things, and He is the Representative of all His redeemed saints, with whom by grace He delights to share the benefits of all His work. God's counsels are seen here concerning the Church as God's building, as the one body of Christ and as His future wife. Even the conflict of believers is here connected with heavenly places, not with flesh and blood.