Useful Bible Studies > Ephesians Commentary > chapter 3

The revelation of Godís plans for the Gentiles

Ephesians 3:3-4

A Ďrevelationí means something that God shows to a person. In Galatians 1:12, Paul refers to a revelation that he received from Christ himself, and not from any person. Nobody had taught it to Paul; it was Christ who showed it to Paul.

That revelation was the discovery of Godís plans for the Gentiles (the people who do not belong to Israel). Paul calls these things a Ďmysteryí because God had permitted Paul to know Godís own thoughts (compare 1 Corinthians 2:9:10). Even Godís people had not fully understood these things in the past. However, now God makes them clear to everyone who desires to know them.

Paul described Godís plans for the Gentiles in a previous letter to the Christians in Ephesus. We do not still have that letter, but Paul teaches about the same subjects in several of his other letters. There, Paul explains that the Gentiles have not replaced Israel in Godís plans (Romans 11:1 and 11:26-29). Rather, at this time, God urges everyone, from every nation including Israel, to put their trust in Christ (Romans 10:9-13). God will accept everyone who does that; he makes them into his holy people (2:11-19), the children of God (Romans 8:14-19). This promise is for both Jews (Israelís people) and Gentiles (all other people): they all can have a right relationship with God if they put their trust in Christ. God has prepared a home for them, Jews and Gentiles alike, in heaven. God will even make them citizens of the New Jerusalem, his wonderful and perfect city from heaven. There, the people, both Jews and Gentiles, who have put their trust in him, will always live with him (Revelation 21:1-7).

Next part: Can Gentiles have a right relationship with God? (Ephesians 3:5-6)

 

Please use the links at the top of the page to find our other articles in this series. You can download all our articles if you go to the download page for our free 700+ page course book.

 

© 2018, Keith Simons.