HEIRS OF GOD
In 1930 an author named Boyden Sparkes recounted the life of the greatest miser America has known. Hetty Green was her name. The book about her life was called The Woman Who Loved Money. In 1916 this heiress died in an attack of apoplexy arguing the merits of skim milk over whole milk (which cost more, of course!).
• She ate cold oatmeal to save the expense of heating it! • Her son lost his leg to amputation through a minor injury, she vainly searched for a free medical clinic and delayed too long! • In a day when one dollar was a full day’s wage she left behind at her death enough money to pay the wages of America’s workforce of all men for a week. 1/8 of a billion dollars in the middle of the depresssion of 1930. She was fabulously wealthy, yet lived in destitution as a pauper.
Sound crazy? Well, look at our text, Eph. 1:11-12:
We as a church are heirs of God!
We need to focus on this vital truth list we live like Hetty Green — live like paupers!
Already we have noted God’s master plan. – Promised and thus ours – Blessed into Christ, our position
v. 4 chosen before creation to be holy and blameless = our justification v. 5 predestined to be marked our as sons = our adoption v. 6 begraced with God, unmerited favor, getting what we do not deserve all this grace is because of = our reconciliation v. 7 redemption, through His blood = forgiveness v. 9 in wisdom and insight knowing the mysteries of God = God’s inner circle
And this morning, v. 11-12: In Him we have obtained an inheritance.
Let’s profile: The word translated “obtained an inheritance” kleroo means “to cast, determine by lots”.
Spinos Zohdiates, a noted Greek expert, writes the setting of this word.
“2819. Kleros; a lot. Meanings: (1) A lot, the stone or mark itself which was cast into the urn or lap (Mt. 27:35; Acts 1:26). The Gr. Method of casting lots was in this way; The lots of the several parties properly marked or distinguished were put into a vessel which was violently shaken by one who turned away his face. The lot which first fell upon the ground indicated the man chosen or preferred for the occasion. It seems that the Romans followed the same method. They attributed divine choice to this method. (2) A lot, allotment, part, or share (Acts 1:17 T.R.; 8:21). (3) An inheritance (Acts 26:18, cf. Acts 20:32; Col. 1:12, cf. The noun kleronomia, 2817, inheritance). (4) Klerol, in the pl. (1 Pet. 5:3) seems to denote those distinct congregations of Christians (cf. Deut. 4:20; 9:29)
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which fell to the lot, as it were, of different pastors. Deriv.: kleroo (2820), to cast lots, determine by lot; holokleros (3648), an entire portion, intact; klaronomos (2818), one who has a kleros, inheritance or a lot; kleronomia (2817), that which constitutes one as heir, inheritance; kleronomeo (2816), to be an heir (kleronomos); sugkleronomos (4789), he who participates in the same inheritance or lot, joint-heir; kataklerodoteo (2624), to divide by lot. “2820. Klaroo; to cast lots, determine by lot, i.e., to determine something, or concerning someone. In Eph. 1:11 it means, ‘to whom the lot has fallen upon us also, as forordained thereto…, to be.’ The entire thought expressed here demands a declaration referring to the present Christian state of those addressed and its actual accomplishment. The Apostle is saying that the lot has fallen upon us now, before the fulfillment of all, to be those who contribute to the praise of His glory as being the first who trusted in Christ.”
In short this means two things and as Warren Wiersbe so aptly put it:
1) We are God’s inheritance, and 2) we inherit from God.
Now think for a moment:
* God cast His lot on us. * He made us His inheritance. * We are an inheritance valuable to God.
Just think of the price God paid for us… Wm. Newell captures this well in his hymn, At Calvary.
O the love that drew salvation’s plan O the grace that brought it down to man O the mighty gulf that God did span — at Calvary.
Mercy there was great and grace was free Pardon there was multiplied to me There my burdened soul found liberty — at Calvary.
O how valuable we are. We are an inheritance. Secondly, this verse can be translated “obtained an inheritance”.
Yes, God planned in eternity past the greatest treasures any could inherit.
But what is it? What do we get? Every promise God ever made, every promise.
2 Pet. 1:4 says “by which are given exceedingly great and precious promises” ______:20 says “for all the promises in Him are yes and in Him. Amen.
So, what do we have? Well —
God1 is in the business of giving great and previous promises, isn’t He? What are you looking for? Whatever it is, He’s promised it. For example, He’s promised peace, love, grace, wisdom, eternal life, joy, victory, strength, guidance, provision for all our needs, power, knowledge, mercy, forgiveness, righteousness, gifts of the Spirit,
1 Mac Study guide?
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trouble, pain, suffering, fellowship with the Trinity, instruction from the Word, truth, spiritual discernment, heaven, a room in the Father’s house, eternal riches…you name it. You see, when we became Christians we were made one with Jesus Christ, and therefore receive everything the Father gives Him. Romans 8:17b says that we were made “heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ.” We inherit all the promises of God.”
Wow – but to help you get a hold of some of these Paul tells us in this epistle to Ephesus no less than 46 specific riches we got when we received Christ Jesus the Lord. Mark a few with me as we walk through this epistle.
These first few are familiar I’m sure in Chapter One. Note that all are because of relationship to Christ!
Chapter One: 1. (1:1) = EN = Faithfulness 2. (1:3) = EN = Blessing 3. (1:4) = EN = Chosen holy and blameless 4. (1:5) = EN = Predestined to adoption as sons 5. (1:6) = EN = Begraced with grace 6. (1:7) = EN/DIA = Redemption and forgiveness 7. (1:9) = EN = Mystery purposed 8. (1:10) = EN = Summary of all things 9. (1:11) = EN > Inheritance 10. (1:12) = EN > Hope/trust 11. (1:13) = EN > Sealed with Holy Spirit’s promise 12. (1:15) = EN > Faith 13. (1:17) = EN > Wisdom in revelation 14. (1:18) = EN > Glory of inheritance 15. (1:19) = EN > Power toward us
This last one is amazing because you may be daying: “I just can’t do it; I’m too weak!” So Paul says that’s okay — Christ is strong!
In fact in v. 19-23 the way to get the v. 18 “glory of His inheritance” is explained:
Seven words of power are used. See them in His Faithfulness, His Power, His Blessing. Let’s look at some of them2:
A) “And what is the exceeding greatness of His power….” The word “power” here is the Greek word dunamis, from which we get our English word dynamite. Dunamis means “inherent power.”
B) “…according to the working…” The word “working” is the Greek word energeia, which is the base of our word energy. Energeia means “operative power.”
C) “…according to the working of His mighty. KJV or “the strength” NAS. The word “mighty” is the Greek word kratos. Sometimes this word is translated “dominion.” Kratos means “ultimate power.”
D) “…according to the working of (His mighty power”)” the strength of His might” NAS. This word “power” is a different Greek word than the one used in the first part of the verse.e It is the word ischus and means “endowed power.”
2 Mac Study guide
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Where does it come from? It’s resurrection power. It’s coronation power. God planned all this, executed it, and makes it happen.
And from Chapter Two through Six there are 31 more.
Let me close with the story they tell as you tour one of the grandest palaces ever crafted in the world, the William Randolph Hearst Castle. – on the coast of California – 1 million acre ranch – a man who controlled the media at the turn of the century – even causing to a great degree the Spanish-American War – giant castle and wealth
But, one day he: – read about a painting and wanted it at any price. – sent secretary out two years searching. Finally found in London warehouse – stored…already belonging to Hearst!
Christian search no more. You possess an inheritance and you have it all in Christ! Let us pray!