Ephesians 1:3-14 NRSV
1 - The apostle Paul began his letter to the believers in
Ephesus with these words,
2 - but they are also appropriate as an ending to worship -
1 - a blessing of God and Godís people,
2 - a reminder of who we are in Christ.
1 - Itís long, so stand firm.
2 - Itís powerful, so lift your head up.
1 - Listen.
2 - Listen.
1 - Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
2 - who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual
blessing in the heavenly places,
1 - just as he chose us in Christ before the foundation of
2 - to be holy and blameless before him in love.
1 - He destined us for adoption as his children through
2 - according to the good pleasure of his will,
1 - to the praise of his glorious grace that he freely
bestowed on us in the Beloved.
2 - In him we have redemption through his blood,
1 - the forgiveness of our trespasses,
2 - according to the riches of his grace that he lavished on
1 - With all wisdom and insight he has made known to us the
mystery of his will,
2 - according to his good pleasure that he set forth in
1 - as a plan for the fullness of time,
2 - to gather up all things in him, things in heaven and
things on earth.
1 - In Christ we have also obtained an inheritance,
2 - having been destined according to the purpose of him who
accomplishes all things according to his counsel and will,
1 - so that we, who were the first to set our hope on
Christ, might live for the praise of his glory. In
him you also,
1 - when you had heard the word of truth,
2 - the gospel of your salvation,
1 - and had believed in him,
2 - were marked with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit;
1 - this is the pledge of our inheritance toward redemption
as God's own people,
2 - to the praise of his glory.
1 - Amen?
2 - (motion to all:) Amen!