Rev. Dr. Jim Toole
Ephesians Sermon Series
Enlarging the Church
Theme: We need to have a larger view of the Church. We need to enlarge our view of the Community of Believers.
There had always been a growing divide between Gentiles and Jews.
As followers of Christ, Jew and Gentile become one. Paul is saying that through the cross of Jesus Christ the barrier has been torn down between these two families.
Ephesians 2: 17-19
This is the image and position Paul declares for the Gentile Christians. Once you were foreigners and strangers in relation to Israel, the family of the one true God. But now you are full members, you are citizens not by circumcision, not by the law, simply through Christ.
But Paul is claiming that the church, the community of believers is the new Temple. Through the power of the Holy Spirit we all are the dwelling place of God.
Questions: N.T. Wright – Life after Death
1. Read Ephesians 2:11-16. Spiritually, we become part of a new group too. How does Paul describe Gentiles before they became part of this new group (vv. 11-13)?
2. What did Jesus do specifically for Gentiles on the one hand (vv. 23-14) and for Jewish people on the other (vv. 14-15)?
3. Consider how those receiving this letter from Paul might have reacted to these verses. How easy or difficult do you think it was for them to live out the oneness they were called to as fellow believers in Christ?