Isaiah 39:1-41:16, Ephesians 1:1-23, Psalms 66:1-20, Proverbs 23:25-28
Today is the 22nd day of September. Welcome to the Daily Audio Bible. I am Brian. It’s great to be here with you today as we close down another week. And we just keep moving forward, day by day, step by step. So as we close this week down, we’ll be going back into the book of Isaiah and then when we get to the New Testament, we are at the book of Ephesians. And we’ll talk about that when we get there. But first, Isaiah 39:1 - 41:16. And we’ve been reading from the Christian Standard Bible this week, which is what we’ll do today.
Introduction to the book of Ephesians:
Okay. So, like we said at the beginning, we completed the book of Galatians yesterday, which is a letter and a letter from the Apostle Paul. Which brings us to the book of Ephesians, which is also a letter from the Apostle Paul to the Ephesians. And this letter is quite a bit different than many of Paul’s other letters, including Galatians. Which leads some biblical scholars to propose that maybe Paul didn’t write this letter, but that someone else had written it in his name. But other scholars would argue that the circumstances surrounding Ephesians and the way these letters, these early letters of Paul, were passed around among the churches, have way more to do with the nuances in Ephesians than who the writer is. So, the Apostle Paul we’ve been getting to know pretty well since we began the book of Acts. Spent three years in Ephesus among the community that he’d established. At that time, the city was one of the most important in the Roman Empire. And as a thriving and cosmopolitan port city, Ephesus had become a melting pot of ideas and culture. But Paul didn’t write this letter to combat false teaching, he didn’t write it to correct misbehavior. He knew his readers. He spent a lot of time among them, which makes this letter even more compelling. Because in Ephesians, we get a sense of the big picture. The big story that’s going on in our faith. Vast mountaintop vistas lead us to consider the massive implications of what God has been and continues to do among his children. As we go through this letter, if you’ll pay attention to what is being said and the implications of what is being said, it is absolutely astounding. One of the things that makes this big picture so captivating is the environment that Paul wrote this from. So, as we learn from the book of Acts, Paul had been arrested in Jerusalem and then he was held in custody in Ceserea Maritima for two years. And then he was pressured to have his case tried in Jerusalem, but as a Roman citizen, Paul knew going back to Jerusalem was probably going to put him in a position to be assassinated since that’s what the plans had been. So, as a Roman citizen, he appealed to Caesar and then he endured this crazy journey by ship to Rome, where he was incarcerated awaiting his trial before the emperor. And it was from this imprisonment in Rome that Paul likely wrote Ephesians. Probably around 60 AD. And knowing that Paul was in captivity when he wrote this letter will make what we read all the more poignant because Paul’s imprisonment, it would have cast doubt on the validity of his message. If people are out saying, this guy, the Apostle Paul, this is what he teaches, but he’s in prison in Rome. That sort of messes with his credibility because unbelievers who are hearing this message and awakening to this message, they’re not signing up to go to prison like Paul. But this didn’t discourage Paul from writing way beyond his circumstance and detailing a spiritual awareness that cannot be altered by imprisonment and can’t be altered by any trial of life. So, Paul poured out his heart and hope in Ephesians. And there are passages in this letter that could be pondered for days. And should be pondered for days. Paul wrote from his heart and appealed to the hearts of his readers. And if we’ll approach this letter with that in mind, it can have the very effect it was intended to have on the Ephesians in our own lives. And so, we begin. Ephesians chapter 1.
Father, we thank You for Your word. We thank You for another week. You have been faithful. Another week that we can claim and declare that. And we can look forward into the coming week and know that You will always be faithful. And we pray, Holy Spirit, come. We want to be faithful to You as You are to us. And we confess our shortcomings and we acknowledge our need for mercy and grace every moment of everyday. And we acknowledge Your love, Your profound love for us. And we rest that You are our father and we are Your children. You will always come for us. Come Holy Spirit, we pray. In Jesus name, we ask. Amen.
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Community Prayer and Praise:
Hey, what’s up everybody? It’s Miguel from Santa Rosa. Gentlemen, I have a word for you, especially with all the gentlemen that have been calling in lately with struggles with sexual sin and pornography. So, check this out. It was last weekend on Saturday. Today is Wednesday. I was playing some soccer and I did a slide where I probably shouldn’t of, in some pretty hard turf and I got a pretty nasty abrasion on my shin now. It’s probably about 8” x 3”. Sorry for the imagery there for those that are squeamish. But here’s the deal, is that every single day that I’ve had this thing it’s been so irritating. It’s been so painful. Man it is terrible. Every single day I got a get up and I got to put a bandage on this thing to keep it sterile, keep it safe, to allow it to heal. Every day I get home from work, I gotta take that thing off and I gotta treat it and that O go to sleep and I wake up I’ve got to put a bandage on it again. And now as I drive to work this morning I’m like, hold up, check this out. Some you guys have a wound, an irritating thorn in the flesh, I’m telling you, you need a new bandage every day. Every day. Get a word every day. Look, it doesn’t take a whole lot of Google searching to find good Bible verses to fight sexual temptation. There are so many out there. Just a quick Google search will show you a lot. Get a new one every day. Memorize it every single morning. Cause you need this. You gotta protect that thing, you gotta keep it sterile, you gotta keep it healthy. That’s the way that I see healing. See, my wound is healing day by day by day. It’s not gone yet. I’m asking for healing in Jesus’ name. He’s given me the tools to do it. So, gentlemen, get yourself a word, get yourself a bandage. Allow that thing to heal. Bless you guys.
Hi this is Lori from Bakersfield California. It’s been a while since I’ve called but I still listen every day. I just got done listening to Lisa the Encourager about Jesus saying, I am the vine and you are the branches. Thank you for that Lisa. I was blessed to hear you talk about that. My favorite reference to this is in John 15. My job in California revolves around agriculture and I want to share a practical knowledge regarding grapevines and vineyards. To produce quality fruit a branch must be raised up from the ground and pruned. Once the branch begins to produce fruit the vine has to be trained using a crossarm or __ trellis to shade the branch and fruit, particularly with table grapes. With God as the vine dresser, he prunes and trains the branches. Then Jesus, as the vine, covers and shades the branches and fruit so the branch can produce and the fruit can remain beautiful. Lisa’s comments reminded me of this and God leaned on me to share. Abide in Jesus and seek his cover. God bless you all.
Hey DAB family this is Byron out in Florida. The last few days we’ve been reading in the book of Galatians and that book has been on my heart for well over a year now. What Paul is basically saying in Galatians is, look guys, Jesus died for your sins and He paid the full cost for your salvation. So, why is that you’re trying to live out the Christian life in terms of what you do instead of what He did?. See, God has a larger life planned for each of us that is bigger, more exciting, more daring, more expansive than anything we could plan for ourselves even in our wildest dream. And as we begin to live into that life that God has for us there will be confusion and there will be pain and there will be loss as God tears apart all the old structures that we use to hold ourselves up and makes room for the larger life that He’s setting aside for us. And as we begin to receive that life we will get things. I just found out a few days ago that I got the promotion I was looking for. God gave me what I needed when I needed it. But I got more than that. From all of that God has shown me that what I have is Him, that he will provide for me and my family, promotion or no promotion, whatever the circumstances will be. And if I have that I have more than anything. And God has the same thing set aside for each of you. If you’re willing to let him tear apart your old life and stretch you into the new larger full life that He has for the __. I love you all you all and God is worthy of all glory and I’ll talk you guys another time. God bless.
Good morning Daily Audio Bible. This is Isabel from Australia again. I was so great to be able to ring up again and just be able to share with you. I love you’s all. I’ve been praying for a lot of you’s always ringing up and I’m always praying for you every time I hear the prayer requests coming again. But I still would like some more prayer for my children, for my daughter and for my son, for Priscilla and Joseph. Joseph is addicted to drugs. He was in a relationship for three years and he’s broken his relationship and he’s had a baby and my granddaughter __ the same month. He left his partner when his baby was only 11 months old and now he’s with another woman. I just feel that this has been so planned by the enemy to destroy his life. This woman is really not for him. The mother of the daughter, I believe is a woman for his life, but she has gone also through a lot of not problems herself. Her name is Chanentel my granddaughters name is Arianna. They both need a lot of prayer. So, if you can please pray for them and please pray for my son that he returns to the things of God, that he…he leaves his woman and he starts going back to…you know…his first partner with my granddaughter and that the Lord can just be with my granddaughter too because she really misses him like anything. She’s 16 months but she so clever. She really understands and she’s hurting too. And it’s just too much abuse because my ex and their father was abusive man and also her ex-partner, her father was an abusive man too. So, all these things have really affected my son. So, if you can please pray for Joseph. He really needs prayer. And just help me because I’m struggling as a mom as I’ve always had to be a mom and a father for both of my kids all the time. I’ve been sort of basically a single parent for many years. So, please pray for my kids cause I really need this prayer. Thank you Daily Audio Bible. May God bless you. I love you’s all. And thank you Brian and Jill for this amazing podcast. God bless you.