“The Riches of Our Inheritance”

Ephesians 1:15-23

For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love[a] toward all the saints, 16 I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, 17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, 18 having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might 20 that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. 22 And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.


Dr. Stewart
We’re going to be looking at Ephesians 1:15-23 but first I want to share something with you. Nick and I went fishing and Joshua’s pond. We got all our gear from the car and we went down to the pond. The boat was strapped to a tree and we figured out how to unhook it and we dragged it, with some manly effort, to the pond. I’ve fished for several years at Joshua’s pond, but always from the shore. The fishing is always good, let’s see some evidence of that (shows a picture of Nick holding up a fish). Oh, there’s another one (shows a picture of himself holding up a bigger fish). Yeah, you’ve always got to use the bigger fish when you’re telling the story. Actually, Nick caught the best fish and the most fish that day. But it’s not easy to fish from Joshua’s pond, from the shore. You see, there’s this rim, perimeter of weeds and moss that’s there, that stretches out 8 to 10 feet. And you have to cast out into the middle of the pond and if you’re fortunate enough to catch a fish and drag it back through that nasty stuff, you can avoid the weeds. But otherwise you have to take your lure…we don’t use live bait, we use lures because that’s what we do…and you hop the thing over the mess so that you keep out of all that junk or you have to clean it off anything you catch. It’s difficult to fish at Joshua’s pond, from the shore. So this time we took the boat and we cast off from the shore. We paddled out a few strokes and we were in the middle where it was clear casting, just back to the edge of the weeds and bringing that lure back. It couldn’t be any better, we’re in the right spot, we’re in the middle, we’re casting, the fish were biting. Nick caught several and I caught one nice one and then I realized that my feet felt a little wet. And I didn’t remember Josh having any water in the bottom of his boat but there it was. And after a couple more casts, the water seemed to be a little deeper around my feet. Now, I have more than one degree and my astounding powers of observation and reasoning were used to conclude that we were sinking, the boats going down! So we quickly paddled back to the shore before we became completely submerged. We spent a long time bailing the water out and draining boat and then we found it, in the back of the boat. We found this (shows picture of small metal item on bottom of boat). Do you know what this is? It’s a boat plug. And it fits in this little hole right here (shows picture of hole in back of boat where plug should be). You see, if you don’t have that little plug in the hole, do you know what happens? When you go out on the water, the water comes in and you’re gonna sink! The boat plug, it’s a magical device, complex to figure this thing out. LOL But we just left it out. And you know I’d like to say that I was totally ignorant, I just didn’t know about this thing, but you know I’ve been in Illinois and I had a boat and I’ve done this very same thing before. I’d forgotten. Later, after we had bailed the boat out, I got this text from Josh and his exact words were, “Just checking to see if you put the plug in the boat”. And he’s got a little emoji with anxiety and gritted teeth on it. You see, the plug is the difference between happily catching fish on the surface and sinking to the bottom, going down with the ship. Fishing is a treasured memory for me, sinking to the bottom not so much. So how did this happen? I had known this important tip but it just didn’t come to my mind. And that’s exactly what Paul’s saying here in Ephesians.

We’re going to look at chapter one, we want to keep you happily fishing on the surface and not sinking down. And we do that, we sink down by forgetting these truths we’re going to look at. This is Paul’s prayer, verse 15-23, “For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and your love toward all the saints, I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might, that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age,but also in the one to come. And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.”

So verse 15 says, “For this reason”, it’s referring back to verses 3-14 of this chapter. There we saw the benefits of our salvation. They’re mapped out for us. And I want to just briefly review those. But first, who wrote this letter? It was Paul. He wrote this letter to the Ephesians. And it may not have been to the just the Ephesian church, but churches in Asia Minor. This letter was probably passed around. And do you know where he wrote that from? He was in prison. So it’s pretty amazing to see Paul’s attitude here. He’s got what kind of an attitude? Yeah, it’s a really great attitude, from a dungeon. And it’s been four years since Paul’s been with the Ephesians. Let’s look at these benefits. First, remember as we look at chapter one, it gives us the benefits of salvation and it also tells us who gave them to us. And it tells us it’s each member of the Trinity, so it starts with the God the Father, it goes to Jesus Christ, and it ends with the Holy Spirit. Verse 3, we’re blessed by God the Father, amazing, unlimited blessings. He lists them here: election in verse 4-he chose us before he created anything in the universe- then predestination and adoption in verse 5, and then in the son we have redemption through his blood in verse 7, and forgiveness of our sins also in verse 7, spiritual insight in verse 8, unity in Christ in verse 10, an inheritance in Jesus Christ in verse 11, by the Holy Spirit you were sealed, he is the guarantee of our inheritance in verse 13. This shows us specific parts of our salvation. We could spend multiple messages on each topic, it breaks down to incredible blessings for you, your salvation.

“For this reason”, because God has miraculously provided our salvation Paul can give thanks. He gives thanks for the believers at Ephesus because not only do they know this salvation, they have faith and they have love. It’s demonstrated. So he commends them. He’s praising them. Do you think there were any problems in the Ephesian church? Yeah, there were some problems. Just think about if you were in charge and writing this letter, and I’m going to use myself as an example here in a minute, how would you handle that when you’re writing the letter? Would you be focusing on the thing that you’re thinking needs to change? Paul doesn’t do that. Would it be easy for him to do that, sure. It’s our nature to be critical. I remember a situation in Illinois, I had an employee and unfortunately, I had to fire this employee. It was a very bad situation and the person was a believer and they weren’t acting like it and they went out into the community and slander us. And so I was forced to write them a letter. And I was mad. And I was ready to let them have it, you know, loaded for bear, I was gonna get them. But I spoke to my pastor. And do you know who my pastor was? Pastor Thom. He was my pastor in Illinois, and he’s still my pastor. It’s kind of cool how that works out. And, you know, he gave me a suggestion. He said, I want you to read the book of Philemon. Really? Okay. And I read the book of Philemon. And my pastor said, look at Paul’s attitude and Paul’s attitude toward Philemon’s master, it’s just like his attitude here in Ephesians. It’s full of grace and kindness and respect. And he starts with commendation. So that’s exactly what I did when I rewrote my letter. Because you see, the first one near was kind of hateful and I needed to change that. It wasn’t kind either. So, when you have a situation like this, before you start with what you may be inclined to say, maybe try being gracious towards others, like Paul.

Paul had heard good things about their faith in the Lord Jesus and their love for all the saints. These two things are linked. Wherever you find faith. You find love, they’re inseparable. Does this love discriminate? No! Verse 15. says, what about that love? How many saints are we to love? All of them. All the saints, any and every believer, no matter who they are, no matter their skin color, whether they’re rich or poor, male or female, fat or skinny, no matter who they are. We are to love them all. MacArthur’s says Christian love extends to all Christians. Philippians 2:2 says we’re to love all believers the same. We know that we have passed out of death into life, John says, because we love the brothers. It’s an evidence of our faith. He who does not love abides in death, 1 John 3:14. Sound theology is no substitute for love. Without love the best doctrine is like a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal, 1 Corinthians 13:1. True salvation goes from the head and heart of the believer out to other believers and out to the world to touch unbelievers in Christ’s name. True salvation produces true love. And true love does not love with word or tongue but in deed, and in truth, 1 John 3:18. Always in the New Testament, spiritual love is defined by an attitude of selfless sacrifice that results in generous acts of kindness done to others. It is more than a feeling or emotion. When the Lord had washed the feet of the proud and self seeking disciples, Jesus demonstrated by example how they were to show love for one another, John 13:34. John summarizes the same in this epistle. We know love by this, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for each other, our brothers and sisters, 1 John 3:16. That’s the sort of love the Ephesian christians were in have for all the saints.

Paul gives thanks to God in his prayer for them. We can learn from him. It’s important to see the positive growth in your brothers and sisters and thank God for them. How often does Paul give thanks for them? Verse 16, Without ceasing. He does not cease to give thanks continually in doing this. So we must. And you know, sometimes as I was looking at this person, that was a believer in Illinois, as I’m looking at that person, I’m thinking, is there something good here? And sometimes it’s hard to see but you can find traces of good, you have to look and you have to concentrate on that sometimes. Because you know what? We change slowly, don’t we? We’re a work in progress. Be patient, look for the good. Give thanks to God for people’s change around you.

Verse 17, it’s essential that we have God’s help in understanding his truth. God’s mind is revealed in Scripture. We should pray for God to show us. The Holy Spirit is our teacher and he leads us into all truth. Charles Spurgeon said that apart from the Spirit, it is easier to teach a tiger vegetarianism than an unregenerate person the Gospel. Let me say that again. Apart from the Spirit, it is easier to teach a tiger vegetarianism than an unregenerate person the Gospel. That doesn’t seem very easy does it? I think tigers like meat. In Psalm 119, the psalmist prays, Open my eyes that I may contemplate wonderful things from your instruction. David Platt, in his Christ centered commentary says this, The reason we often fail to seek the Spirit’s illumination is that we have an inflated view of ourselves. We are tempted to feel self-sufficient, as if we don’t need God’s help. The first step to becoming a student of the Bible is having a heart of humility. A heart that says, Please give me understanding as we pray. In verse 17, you can see it, where he’s praying for the Spirit of revelation and wisdom. And what is it that he wants to know? You see it there at the end of verse 17. He wants the knowledge of him, of Christ.

David Platt continues to say, The first reason Paul gives us for our needing God to open the eyes of our hearts is so that we might know God better-revelation in the knowledge of Him. And this may seem elementary, but is anything in our lives more important than this? Is anything more important than knowing God? D. A. Carson says, What is the greatest need in the church today? The one thing we need in the Western church is a deeper knowledge of God. We need to know God better. The beginning, the middle, and the end of the Christian life is about knowing God. Beginning, Jesus says, in his high priestly prayer in John 17, This is eternal life, that they may know you. This is what eternal life is about. It’s knowing you. The only true God and the one you’ve sent Jesus Christ, that’s John 17:3. Jesus said to some men who thought they were his disciples, I never knew you. The terrible truth of those who follow and think they have a relationship, but they don’t know Christ. The middle of our Christianity, Paul writes, My goal is to know Him and the power of His resurrection, Philippians 3:10. And at the end, when Christ returns, John writes, We know that when he appears, we will be like him. Because we will see him as he is, 1 John 3:2. We’ll know him fully then. The Christian life is moving towards the Visio Dei. Anyone here know Latin? Does anybody know how to pronounce that? I asked Siri. Siri said, I don’t speak Latin. LOL That’s when we’ll see Christ, the Christian life is about knowing God and making him known to others. Spurgeon says it well, “I go back to my home, many a time, mourning that I cannot preach my Master even as I myself know him. What I know of him is very little compared with the matchlessness of His grace. Would that I knew more of him and that I could tell it out better.” J. I. Packer, in his classic book Knowing God, gives four characteristics of those who know God. First, they have great energy for God, great thoughts of God, great boldness for God, and great contentment in God. So let us pray that God will open our eyes that we may know him better.

We know him by having our eyes enlightened, verse 18. Because we didn’t know Jesus when we were in darkness. But then he shines into our hearts the light of the glorious Gospel to save us that we can know him, that we can know more of him. He continues to shine in our hearts as we walk with him. Hendrickson says this about illumination, He removes the mists of our ignorance, the clouds of our lust, our selfish and jealous dispositions and imparts to us sorrow for sin and faith working through love. The spiritual eye is enlightened when the heart is purified. For us to have our eyes enlightened involves learning not to settle with our sin or to learn to live with it but to turn from it to the light. We think of Christ’s beatitude, Blessed are the pure in heart for they will see God. What is it that he wants us to know more about here in verse 18? That you may know what is the hope. We sang about hope earlier, didn’t we? The hope which you’ve been called to. As you look around, do you see many people with hope now days? There’s a lot of people with despair wouldn’t you say, this is a pretty dark place. We have a living hope, a hope that is with us and sustains us every day. This hope is firmly grounded in God’s infallible promises, his great and precious promises that he’s given to us. This includes verse 18, the hope of his calling. This calling that he’s given us, it’s an effectual calling, a call when we hear the Lord’s voice, and we know him, and we follow him. And we follow him every time as believers. Jesus said, everyone that he calls, they come, they’ll never be cast out, never be cast out. We follow him every time, by God’s grace. We have a glorious future, in this rescue given to us by Jesus, our Messiah.

What are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints? This is getting to know all these blessings that we talked about in chapter one, verses 3-14. The fullness of our salvation. There’s a common problem I found with Josh’s boat, when I left the plug out, I started to sink. And we tend to do that in life, we tend to leave the plug out and we live in a sinking ship. Because we focus on other things more than Christ and his promises and his help and the richness of his salvation. We forget our identity, we forget who we are, children of the King. There are riches to our inheritance in Christ. Warren Wiersbe told this story of William Randolph Hearst. Hearst was an American businessman, a newspaper publisher in New York and San Francisco. He was very rich, one of the richest men I’m sure of his day. He was known for developing the largest newspaper chain and media company. Kind of a Bill Gates in the time he lived. Once he read an extremely valuable piece of art, when he decided he must have it, he must add that piece of art to his collection. He instructed his agent to scour the galleries in the world to find the masterpiece. He was determined to have it at any price. And after many months of searching, the agent reported that the piece already belonged to Mr. Hearst. And he had stored it in one of his warehouses for many years. He didn’t remember, he didn’t know he had it. At least he was consistent, right? He knew what he liked. He liked it before and he liked it again. I thought about me, you know, I did that. I got a birthday card for my wife. I got the best card for her. And I gave it to her. She really liked the card. And a few years later, I was out and I got the same card. I did not remember it. But I liked what I liked. I liked that card. And I gave it to her again. I hope she liked it as much the second time.

MacArthur says this, Yet today many Christians spend a great deal of time and effort mainly looking for blessings already available to them. Their need is to follow the light they already have. They pray for strength, although his Word tells them they can do all things through Christ who strengthens them, Philippians 4:13. They pray for more love, although Paul says that God’s own love is already poured out within their hearts, through the Holy Spirit, Romans 5:5. They pray for more grace, although the Lord says the grace he has given is sufficient, 2 Corinthians 12:9. They pray for peace, although the Lord has given them his own peace, which surpasses all comprehension, Philippians 4:7. That is if they cast their care on him and give those anxieties to him. We think God is reluctant to share with us, that he’s holding out on us. It’s not true. The Christian’s primary need is for wisdom and obedience to behold the abundance of God’s blessings that we already have. Our problem is not a lack of blessings, but a lack of insight and wisdom to understand them properly and faithfully. We can’t find the plug. Our blessings are so vast that the human mind can’t comprehend them. And our own minds, we can’t fathom the riches we have in Jesus Christ, we need divine help.

But there’s more. Besides the hope of our calling and the riches of our inheritance, what do you see in verse 19? The measurable greatness of his power toward us who believe according to the working of his great might. And in these few verses, 19-21, he uses four different Greek words for power. He stacks them up, one on another. I believe it’s for emphasis. The first word is Dunamos-power, verse 19. It’s where we get the word dynamo or dynamite from. In Romans 1:16, Paul says, that we’re not ashamed of the gospel of Christ because it is the power of God to those who believe. If we trust him, we have access to that, the gospel, that message is dynamite. Power is only for believers, people who trust and follow Jesus. The second Greek word is Energia. The working that he talks about here in vereses 19 and 20, the energizing force of the Spirit that empowers believers to live for the Lord. The third Greek word is Kratos-strength, in verse 21, is used for dominion. And the fourth Greek word is Icthus, which is might in verse 19, to be empowered. The Holy Spirit empowers us to do whatever we need to do. Whatever he asks us to do. In these verses, he piles up word after word about the immensity of God’s power. This is the emphasis, his almighty power, and that power is at work in us. 2 Corinthians 4:7 says, But we have this treasure in earthen vessels that the surpassing greatness of the power may be of God and not of ourselves. We have it but it’s not so we can glory in it. It’s so that we can glorify him, that we can serve him well.

Before Jesus ascended, Jesus told his disciples, You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, Acts 1:8. We received the Holy Spirit when we believed in Jesus death and resurrection for us. Is God discriminating among believers? You get it if you believe, when you trust Jesus, everyone. There’s no second class citizens. There’s none of this baptism into the Holy Spirit stuff that’s supposed to make you a better class christian. That’s not true. When you believe and trust Christ, you received the Holy Spirit, full package. You have God’s power. You’re baptized in him. We’re told that in Corinthians, everyone. God is able to do exceedingly abundantly beyond what we ask or think. You know, I can think and imagine quite a bit, can’t you? It’s beyond what you can ask or think, it’s beyond your imagination. According to the power that works within us, Ephesians 3:20. We have access to incredible infinite power in Christ. It is the same power, verse 20, that he worked in Christ when He raised him from the dead. He seated him, at his right hand, in heavenly places.

There’s two things there, right? There’s the aspect of resurrection. And there’s the aspect of him ascending, Christ’s ascension to God’s right hand in heaven. The Bible gives us the detailed account of Jesus torture and humiliation and his death. And he was dead. The soldier stuck a spear in his side and blood and water flow down. You know what that means? It means to me, in medicine, that the blood separated, that the heart stopped, that blood’s been sitting there, it’s separated out, he’s dead. There’s no question. After three days, on the first day of the week, a Sunday, Jesus raised from the dead and walked out of the tomb. We read the Bible, who’s responsible for this resurrection power? If we read through Scripture, it’s the Father, and it’s the Son, and it’s the Holy Spirit. Everyone is credited with this. The power of his resurrection, the supernatural power that brought Jesus back to life. He conquered sin, he conquered death, he conquered Satan and hell for eternity. That same power will raise us on the last day. That same power caused him to ascend to heaven, to take his place. God gave him the place at his right hand. Do you know what that means, to be at God’s right hand? It’s the position of privilege and honor and favor and victory and power. And this position belongs to Jesus Christ alone. David Platt says, Think about where some of these Ephesians were coming from. Some of them were formally caught up in magic, the Artemis cult, astrology, and emperor worship. Their lives were dark and perverted, Ephesians 4:17-19. And you know what, as I thought about this, I thought about my own life. My life was dark and perverted before Christ. But by the grace of God, Christ saved us. Was your life dark and perverted before? Has Christ reached in and given you life and the light? He saved us, rescued us, oh we needed it! The people of this culture were in fear of hostile spiritual forces. And Paul was assuring them that God’s power is supreme over all their enemies. We need not fear, when we have superior power. The power of the risen Christ is ours, to do battle against worry and against temptation and against doubt and even demonic warfare. That’s our power, given to us by him.

Why do we often fail to rely on this mighty power? Sometimes, it’s because we have a higher view of ourselves, or a diminished view of God. That’s the failure to understand the spiritual battle we’re in. And you do know that you’re in a war, right? Every one of us is in a war that goes on. There’s a battle between the flesh and the Spirit, between Satan with his demonic forces and God’s kingdom. We’re in it. The Evil One and his hosts hate us. They hate our faith. They hate the church. They hate our marriages. They hate our mission. We see evidence of that in our culture, don’t we, people going down. And it’s satanic many times. It’s people’s flesh, living for themselves. That’s why we must start to lean into Christ, then pray for his resurrection power to strengthen us, and empower us to live for God’s glory.

But Paul doesn’t stop there. He keeps going, verse 21, “Far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in the one to come. What are authorities and powers and dominion? These speak of the physical and the spiritual realm. All human leaders, presidents, prime minister, governors, Christ is over all of them. He rules over all of them, there are none of them that are in the position that they have, but by the hand of God, they’ve been placed there sovereignly. What about angels and cherubim and seraphim? Christ is greater. Christ is over them. What about the satanic? I don’t understand or know the names of the demonic forces, powers and principalities and those things. I don’t know how they fit. But I know that Christ is over them. And their head, Satan, Christ is over him. And he’s defeated him. He’s over all authorities, powers and dominions. And how long is this good for? Verse 21, Through this age and the one to come, the ages. He put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church. He is a sovereign ruler. And he has been, throughout the ages, throughout the centuries. In Daniel’s time, he was in exile in Babylon under King Nebuchadnezzar, the greatest king on Earth, the most powerful man of his day. The king was proud. And he was speaking about his wonderful accomplishments. And he tried to steal glory from God, he lost his sanity. And he ate grass like an ox in a field for seven years. At the end of that time, Daniel 4:34, he says, “I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven and my reason returned to me and I bless the Most High God, and praise and honor Him who lives forever, for his dominion is an everlasting dominion. And his kingdom goes from generation to generation.” Verse 37, “Now, I, Nebuchandnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, and those who walk in pride, he is able to humble”. God’s sovereignty tends to put people in their place beneath him. Do you see that? You know, you can try, but you won’t win if you go against God, not even if you’re the most powerful man on earth.

Now look at verses 22 and 23. Why does he say he’s over everything and then he adds the church, why does he have to add the church if he’s over everything? Could the church be special, different from the world? It’s worthy of mentioning besides everything else, the body of Christ, that’s the church and they’re unified with him. They’re one with him. MacArthur says, God gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all. Christ not only is the head of the church, but its fullness. And since he has such a unique and intimate relationship with the redeemed who he loves, all his power will be used in their behalf to fulfill his loving purpose for them. He’s completely over us and completely in us, our supreme Lord and our supreme power, our head. The church is the fullness or complement of Christ. As a head he must have a body to manifest the glory of the head, so the Lord must have the church to show his glory, Ephesians 3:10. Yet in a thrilling and securing wonder, he’s chosen us to display his incomparable majesty. Let me say that again. He has chosen us to display his incomparable majesty! Christ is incomplete until the church, which is his body, is complete. He’s incomplete without us. Jesus Christ fills all one all, giving his fullness to believers. John Calvin said, This is the highest honor of the church that until he is united to us, the Son of God reckons himself in some measure incomplete. To be united with Jesus. There’s going to be a marriage supper isn’t there? This is an intimate relationship. We’ll be joined to him forever, his bride, an amazing, intimate relationship with God.

And notice he is our fullness, without him we are incomplete. This is our destiny. This is our identity. But we’ve forgotten that or we just can’t see it many times. We didn’t put in the plug. And this is the prayer, that you would appreciate the riches of your inheritance. McClaren says this is our hope, even in the middle of troubles and difficulties and trivialities of each day. So let me ask you this. Do you have troubles and difficulties like every day? That’s like another day, doing the same thing over again, do you ever have that? I’ve got that. But McClaren says, the riches of our inheritance is our hope. And hope can be cultivated, it can be grown. We’re far too short sighted. Our fault is not that we don’t hope, but that we hope for such near things, for such small things, like the old mariners ship captains who had no compass or navigational equipment, and they were obliged to creep along the coasts and steer from point to point along the shore. We ought to launch out boldly into mid-ocean. That kind of reminded me of Captain Kirk, Boldly go where no man has gone before, like we’re on the Enterprise. We can have that boldness, it’s in knowing that we have an identity, it’s God’s children and he will guide us. We have God’s glorious riches in his inheritance in us because of what he’s accomplished for us. We need greater insight into who he is and what he has for us to do. 2 Corinthians 8:9, “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.” We have riches, praise God for his amazing blessings through salvation in Jesus. Put in the plug. (shows picture of boat plug properly placed in hole) Do you see where the plug is now? It’s in the hole, where it belongs. Having the plug in the hole allows you to be out there, enjoying catching fish. And that’s part of the riches of our inheritance in him. (shows picture of Nick holding up large fish) So you can catch fish, right? That’s a divine mandate. We’re supposed to catch fish, you know that right? (congregation laughs)

Let’s pray. Lord, thank you. We don’t have words that can express what your salvation means. We don’t understand it all. We want to understand it more. Help us. Help us to see more of you, help us to be committed to your way, seeking your face, seeking who you are. And help us to recognize a little more of the inheritance, the riches we have in Christ. We thank you for Jesus. And all he’s done for us in sacrificing himself for us. In Jesus name, Amen.

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