Everyone can be an heir to God's kingdom—Jew and Gentile alike—says Paul in his Ephesian letter. This is the mystery of the gospel, revealed by God to this Apostle to the Gentiles. But this is not a mystery to God. He has planned this salvation since Creation, for all humankind, through His Son, Christ Jesus.
Paul goes on to reveal several guidelines for living in a manner worthy of this salvation. Author Mark Holmes, a pastor and teacher of God's Word, aptly expounds Paul's teachings, showing that the subjects addressed within these guidelines are "a lifestyle and understanding of God. . . relationships with the world and society. . . goals, dreams, worship practices, and even the means by which one follows the will of God."
Holmes links Paul's words with a Trinitarian theme: God's initiation of the plan of salvation, Jesus' sacrifice in the working of the plan, and the Holy Spirit's power to sustain the holy life of those who choose this salvation. "If ever there were an owner's manual for the Christian, the Ephesian letter would be it."
Mark A. Holmes is an ordained minister in The Wesleyan Church. He has pastored Wesleyan churches in western Pennsylvania and Wisconsin for fifteen years, including his current pastorate in Superior, Wisconsin.