Tuesday, September 27, 2016


By Donald Webb

Scripture Reading: Ephesians 3:6

Ephesians 3:6 might be better understood if stated thus: "That the Gentiles should be joint heirs, and a joint body, and joint partakers of His promise in Christ by the gospel." This verse is actually answering the question "what is the mystery?" What is the mystery or secret (verses 3 and 4) which was not made known in other ages (verse 5) but now made known by revelation to Paul (verses 3 and 5)? It is that the Gentiles should be joint heirs, a joint body, and joint partakers of God's promise! We might ask "joint with whom?" With the Jew (2:11-18)! We would further ask "joint in what?" Joint in a new heavenly organism, the Body of Christ. The secret is that in this hitherto unprophesied age of grace believing Jews and Greeks are now reconciled into one new man---a joint body---by the cross (2:15,16). Israel and her kingdom program have been set aside and now our greater commission is to "make all men see what is the fellow-ship of the mystery" (Ephesians 3:9)!

But what are we joint heirs to? We're joint heirs to inherit the salvation of God (2:5-10). Next we're a joint body, that is that any man, without national distinction, upon believing the gospel is placed into this new organism---the Body of Christ (I Corinthians 12:13). Finally, we're joint partakers of His promise in Christ by the gospel. What is His promise in Christ? It is the divine principle which God promised before the world began but did not fully reveal until Paul, that of eternal life in Christ for all (Jews or Greeks) who believe the gospel (Titus 1:2; 3:4-7). This promise is centered in Christ i.e., the finished work he accomplished on Calvary's cross. It is assured by God's own faithfulness to His immutable counsel and oath. It is received through believing the gospel of grace. How wonderful to know and proclaim the secret!

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