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Walking with God and Christ’s Gifts

Ephesians 4:8-10

 

In this portion of Holy Scripture, God the Holy Ghost inspired the Apostle Paul to tell us the reason the Lord Jesus gave his Church the established ministry of God called, God ordained, God gifted, God sent Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, and Pastors.

 

His Reason

He gave pastors to his Church specifically to promote the blessed unity of souls in the bond of peace with Christ and one another (Ephesians 4:1-7). — We see this by the opening word of verse 8 — “Wherefore!” — For the sake of this unity, our ascended Savior “gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.”

 

Type Fulfilled

Paul’s words are taken directly from Psalm 68:18, describing our Lord’s ascension to heaven from the Mount of Olives in the sight of the Apostles (Acts 1:9-11). In his ascension, the Lord Jesus Christ, our great High Priest, fulfilled the type of Israel’s high priest, entering into heaven to make intercession for his elect, to prepare a place for them, and to send down the Holy Spirit with his grace and gifts to them.

      “He led captivity captive.” — Our almighty Redeemer led a train of vanquished foes. He conquered those who had conquered us: sin, Satan, and death. Christ conquered and triumphed over Satan and every spiritual enemy of our souls.

And gave gifts to men” — the gift of the Spirit to his Church, and men gifted for the work of the ministry. And it is God (Father, Son, and Holy Ghost) who (by the grace and power of his Spirit) makes those men useful for God’s glory and the good of the Church (Romans 12:5-8

 

Mission Accomplished

Ephesians 4:9-10 tell us that our Savior, Jehovah’s Righteous Servant, the Christ of God, our Covenant Surety, accomplished his mission. He could not have ascended up to heaven if he did not first descend from heaven (John 3:13). He came down from heaven to do his Father’s will (Daniel 9:24; Matthew 1:21). And he went back to heaven because he had done it (John 16:7-11). Fulling all righteousness by his obedience unto death, the Lord Jesus Christ saved his people from their sins.

            The phrase, “the lower parts of the earth,” refers to the whole of our Lord’s humiliation. When a human body was formed for him in Mary’s womb, it was a work curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. When our dear Redeemer was made sin and a curse for us, and bore all the punishment due to our transgressions, his body was laid in the grave, in the heart of the earth.

            All this was done “that he might fulfill all things” that were written, prophesied, and typified of him in the Old Testament Scriptures. All that he did, is doing, and will do is according to the Scriptures (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Don Fortner

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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