In Ephesians 1:6, Paul says that Godís actions on behalf of his people prove the greatness of his grace (Godís wonderful kindness). God chose them; he is making them holy and perfect; in the future age they will receive the full rights of sons in his family (1:4-5). These things are truly wonderful; of course God deserves that we should praise him for them. God has brought great honour to his own name by these good and generous acts. Truly God is, as James 1:17 says, the giver of every good and perfect gift.
God does not give us that grace because we deserve it. We deserve nothing from God but his anger and his judgement because of our many wrong and evil deeds (Romans 6:23). He gives it because of Christ (Romans 5:15). Here Christ is called by the title Ďthe Belovedí, in other words, the Son whom God the Father truly loves (Mark 1:11). God can forgive all our evil deeds because Christ suffered death for us (Isaiah 53:4-6). So now, Christ brings us to God (John 14:6; Hebrews 7:24-28), not as guilty people and the enemies of God, but as the children of God (John 1:12-13). Christ even calls us his brothers (Hebrews 2:11-13). We share in the perfect love that God the Father has for his children (1 John 3:1 and 4:16-19).
It constantly astonished Paul to know how great Godís grace (wonderful kindness) is. Before he became a Christian, he had fought cruelly against the first Christians. However, even that had not prevented the operation of Godís grace in his life. Now, he saw that Godís grace was constantly working through him, to bring other people into a right relationship with God (1 Corinthians 15:9-10).
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© 2018, Keith Simons.