Chapter 1.

A Simple Outline

  1. The Prelude, vs. 1-2
  2. The Plan of the Father, vs. 3-6
  3. The Provision of the Son, vs. 7-12
  4. The Pledge of the Spirit, vs. 13-14
  5. The Prayer of the Apostle, vs. 15-23

Here Is A Useful Yet Simple Outline of Chapter One

A Chapter on Redemption

As we move forward to open our minds and hearts to the content of this book, we will see that this Epistle has the simplest structure, yet the profoundest language of any of Paul's Epistles. Here we are lifted above the earth and sit in the Heavenlies in Christ.

The Apostolic Introduction


I. See the Predule to the Book, vs. 1-2

These are the opening verses of the book. Opening verses are always full, fertile and fascinating.

  1. See the OPENING—God's will, v. 1
         This is the starting point—The primary cause.
         See His will in this chapter—It is ever before us.
  2. See THE ORGAN USED—God's Man—Paul
  3. See THE OBJECT—to God's People—Saints, v. 1
         The Message is in the Will of God
         The Message is for the People of God
    1. Their POSITION—At Ephesus
      • A Wise City—educated
      • A Wealthy City—Big business
      • A Wicked City—Heathenish
    2. Their CONDITION—"Saints"
           To be a saint there meant something
           They preferred Heaven to Asia Minor
    3. Their COMPANIONS—"The Faithful"
  4. See THE OVERFLOW—"Grace and Peace," v. 2
  5. See THE "ALL SPIRITUAL BLESSINGS" OF THE BELIEVER, v. 3
         The Apostle opens with a grand doxology, "Blessed."
         It precedes a great revelation—His grace.
         God is the Blessed One, Who has blessed us with blessings.
         The blessing of God through the Second Adam is to fill the new creation with the products of grace.

In this verse we have:

See Our Rich Endowment

Ephesians 1:3-14

The opening verses of this chapter are related to the Trinity in their affecting man's salvation and the formation of the Church which is His Body.

See three activities of the Trinity:

This is not a long portion of Scripture, but it is a strong portion. See our rich endowment.


I. We Are DIVINELY ENDOWED, 1:3

We have all that we need for the life which now is, and for the life to come.

All our blessings are in safe keeping—"In the Heavenlies"

II. We Are DIVINELY ADORNED, 1:4—"Holy"

III. We Are DIVINELY DESIGNATED, 1:5

This is our future prospect—It sure looks good.

IV. We Are DIVINELY ACCEPTED, 1:6

It means something to be accepted in some social circles. There are some places I wouldn't be welcomed. The believer is well received in Heaven.

Our acceptance in Heaven is—

V. We Are DIVINELY ACQUIRED, 1:7

We are redeemed by Blood

VI. We Are DIVINELY VALIDATED, 1:13-14—"Sealed"

In these first fourteen verses Paul is unfolding the truth of our redemption. Verse seven speaks of Redemption.

The Special Plan of God in Ephesians 1:3-14

This plan—


I. Includes All Time

From Eternity Past, 1:4

To Eternity Future, 1:10


II. Embraces All Parties

Jews and Gentiles—They are saved and in Him


III. Engages All Persons of the Trinity

The Father Selects, 1:4-5

The Son Saves, 1:7

The Spirit Seals, 1:13-14


IV. Defines an Ordered Plan

All is according to His—Good Pleasure—Will and Purpose, v. 9


V. Imparts Permanent Benefits

Forgiveness—Settles the Past Redemption—Secures the Present Sonship—Safeguards the Present and Future


VI. Discloses the Nature of the Trinity

Tribute is given to God the Father—To the Praise of His Glorious Grace, 1:3-6

Tribute is given to God the Son—To the Praise of His Glory, 1:7-12

Tribute is given the God the Spirit—To the Praise of His Glory, 1:13-14


The Prayer of the Apostle, 1:15-23

In the opening of this first chapter, Paul has been letting us see the tremendous blessings we have because we are related to Christ. Truly the wealth of the believer is seen in these opening verses. We are endowed with heavenly wealth in Christ. In fact, chapters one to three speak of—

There are two great prayers in this Epistle that have to do with truth related to the Church which is His Body.

Three things can be clearly seen in this Prayer—

  1. The Occasion of the Prayer—"For this cause"— v. 15, 16
  2. The Object of Prayer—vs. 17-19a
  3. The Outlook of the Prayer—vs. 19a-23

Here is a blinding unveiling of Christ's resurrection, enthronement and authority—We have a long Praise Section, 1:3-14

We now have a long Prayer Section—In this section we see—vs. 15-23—

I. To Know the Prospect He has in Store for Us—

"The Hope of His Calling," v. 18

This has to do with the future of the Child of God. In that calling there is set forth all the truth mentioned in verses 3-14. Paul wants the Saints to see and know the rich blessings we have in Christ. Our hope is radiant because of a number of basic truths that give us sure hope—

  1. God Chose to Have a Church (v. 4) We are in it.
  2. God Predestinated Us (Church) (5-11) We are in it.
  3. He Has Redeemed Us (v. 7) It is completed
  4. Our Consummation is in His Calling (vs. 9-11)
         Our end is the best.
         It was all in view when God saved us.
         Paul wants the Saints to know this prospect.

II. To Know the Pleasure He Takes in Us—

"The Riches of the Glory of His Inheritance in the Saints," v. 18b

We have found a rich storehouse in Him, vs. 4-14

Now, what does He see in us—His Holy Bride?

The text speaks of "The Riches of the Glory of His Inheritance in the saints"—What a statement!

He takes pleasure in us because—

In this prayer for "Revelation" (v. 17), the enlightened believer is to see what marvels God has put within his grasp.

We see here—

It is always true that:

All the Power of God is there for us, but it is unknown and unappreciated because it is unappropriated by us.

That power that Paul speaks about is:

Now listen—We have no excuse for our being powerless Christians. We have here set before us what God has made possible "to usward who believe."

That Power that was Exercised at the Resurrection—that Elevated Christ, that Enthroned Christ is for us—

III. To Know the Power He Can Release to Us—vs. 19-21

Paul prays that we might know that Power. He, himself, prayed to know that Power, Phil. 3:10.


The Three "Whats" in Paul's Prayer, 1:15-23

I. This Is the Greatest PRAYER that can be Prayed, v. 17

Why is this so?

  1. It has to do with the Christian's greatest need
         A knowledge of Him, Phil. 3:10
  2. It has to do with the Christian's reservoir of help
  3. It has to do with the Christian's heritage

II. Here We See the Greatest POWER than can be Experienced, vs. 19-20

  1. It is a Divine Power
         The very power of God—supernatural power
  2. It is a Demonstrated Power
  3. It is Displaying Power, 20b-21
         It transfers us from a lowly place to a Heavenly position

III. Here Is the Greatest POSITION that can be Occupied, vs. 20-23

Paul's Prayer

Ephesians 1:17-23

His Requests are Concerned with—

"A Prayer that Enlightens"

Notice three great truths in this prayer.


I. The ENCOURAGEMENT of Hope, 1:8, "What Is the Hope of His Calling"

See our calling by Him:

II. The ENRICHMENT from His Resources, 1:16

We have an Inheritance in us.

We have an Inheritance in Him, 1:4 & 1:11

III. The ENERGIZING Power of God, 1:19-23

This is not "Creation Power." It is not the power that was manifest at the Exodus in Egypt.

To show us the greatness of the Power, Paul brings before us the subsequent verses. The exceeding greatness of His resurrection is seen in the power He wrought in Christ at certain experiences in His life. See four great facts:

"In Christ" in the Prison Epistles

The Holy Spirit in the Prison Epistles

The Person of Christ in the Prison Epistles