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“The Manifold Wisdom of God”
Displayed in the Choice of Christ to be Our Redeemer
“The manifold wisdom of God” is shown forth in devising and accomplishing the redemption and salvation of sinners by the Lord Jesus Christ. Here God the Holy Ghost declares that this wisdom, the infinite, multifaceted wisdom of the Triune Jehovah is made known to angels in heaven and men on earth by the everlasting salvation of God’s elect, his church, by Christ. It is made known both by the Gospel we preach and by the accomplishment of our complete deliverance from sin, and death, and hell into “the glorious liberty of the sons of God” by our dear Savior.
In this third chapter of Ephesians the Apostle Paul is talking about the glorious Gospel revelation of redemption by Christ, the salvation of sinners by Christ. This glorious work of redemption and grace now revealed and brought to light by the Gospel was hidden in ages past (vv. 3-9). It was hidden from eternity in the secret counsels of God. It was hidden, that is to say, it was not fully revealed, in the Old Testament, under the types and shadows of the law (v. 5; 1 Peter 1:10-11). It is hidden from all men by nature, by reason of their spiritual blindness. In particular the mystery of the Gospel was hidden from the Gentile world.
But now, since the incarnation, life, death, resurrection, and exaltation of Christ, the mystery of redemption has been made known to all men, Jews and Gentiles, by the preaching of the Gospel. And by the church, that is, by the salvation of the church and by the ministry of the church in proclaiming the Gospel, God shows both sinners on earth and the holy angels of heaven his manifold wisdom displayed in the redemption of sinners by Christ.
God’s reason for revealing his secret counsels concerning the work of redemption by the Gospel, according to this passage of Holy Scripture, is that he might make known his own great wisdom. Paul calls it “the manifold wisdom of God,” because of the many facets of Divine wisdom revealed in the redemption of sinners by Christ. God’s wisdom is infinite.
God’s eternal purpose of grace to redeem sinners by Christ displays great, infinite wisdom. The Lord Jesus Christ is the Redeemer of God’s own choosing. Therefore, the Lord God called him, “Mine Elect” (Isaiah 42:1). When God set his eye upon his Son, choosing him to save his elect, he said, with regard to all his elect, — “Deliver him from going down to the pit: I have found a ransom (an atonement)” (Job 33:24). — “I have laid help upon one that is mighty; I have exalted one chosen out of the people” (Psalm 89:19). We rejoice in the love, mercy, and grace of God. But it was the wisdom of God which found a way for a holy God to embrace fallen, sinful men and women in love, mercy, and grace. How we ought to admire the wisdom of God in providing such a Redeemer as our great Savior is!