Connor Galyen Discussion Questions

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Connor Galyen Discussion Questions

Post by cjgalyen on Wed Dec 05, 2018 2:49 pm

1. The epistle that I chose to look at is Ephesians. I think in Paul's letter to the Ephesians, he does a good job at making a clear difference in the Not-Yet-Already-Here-Kingdom. First, in verses 3-11, Paul is describing the Spiritual Blessings in Christ, and his way of doing this is walking the reading through the Gospel and explaining what that means for the individual. He begins by talking about how God Himself came to Earth through Jesus, and offers us redemption and salvation through His blood, adoption into His kingdom, and every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places. He ends the first half of this section by saying that this plan of redemption and salvation was God's predestined plan from the start and that it was done "to unite all things in Him [Christ], things in heaven and things in earth". Throughout the first chapter, Paul mentions multiple times this "inheritance" that we receive through Christ Jesus and is linked directly to our adoption into the Kingdom of God. This is the "Already Here" part of the Kingdom. We are adopted into God's Kingdom now as we have our inheritance through Jesus which is "sealed with the promised Holy Spirit"(Chapter 1, verse 13). And along with this inheritance Christ is going to unite all things in Him, heaven and earth. It goes on to say that this is because Christ is seated at his [God's] right hand in the heavenly places, "far above all rule and authority and power that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come" (chapter 1, verses 20-21). I chose this section because Paul does a great job of distinguishing the two parts of the Not-Yet-Already-Here-Kingdom, but how they both center on Christ's authority to save and rule the world and how this centers on God's eternal plan to unite heaven and earth and rule over all.

2. I chose question #1: "Explain how the kingdom is both a present experience and a future hope. What do we already have and what do we still hope for?". So this relates alot to what I already wrote about in the first question. So God's plan from the beginning was to be in relationship with man and have authority over the land as it is shown in the Garden. But when sin comes into the picture, it seems like God needs to change His plan and attempt this in another way, through Jesus. But the Bible teaches us that Jesus was God's plan since the beginning of time and it relates to this Not-Yet-Already-Here current reality of the Kingdom of God. So through Jesus's death on the cross we have been atoned for by God through the Son from the wrath against sin through God the Father. Because of this, we have been adopted into the Kingdom of Heaven and reconciled to God. And therefore Ephesians states that we have been "blessed...in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places". And this is through the Holy Spirit which lives and dwells among us and can empower us. So this is our present experience and our current realty. God's Ultimate plan made through fruition in Christ Jesus, our reconciliation and adoption into the Kingdom of Heaven, and our gift of the Holy Spirit through which God provides His spiritual blessings. The next part is our future hope. The first part of that is our adoption into the Kingdom of Heaven. So through Jesus, we have everlasting life with God in Heaven. But, the second part of that is the coming age. So the Word states that Jesus will come back and rule over the Heavens and the Earth. It says in Ephesians that "[the] plan for the fullness of time, [is] to unite all things in him [Christ], things in heaven and on earth" (Chapter 1, verse 10). This is God's plan to come back and have dominion and authority over the whole world for eternity. So this is our future hope. That God's adoption and reconciliation with us will result in our receiving of everlasting life through the Father in Heaven, and that one day Jesus will come back and reign over the heavens and the earth for all eternity in the coming age.
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cjgalyen

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