The Mystery of the Regeneration

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v1-6 Introduce the mystery of the Gospel
The Mystery of the Revelation v1-3
The Mystery of the Regeneration v4-5
The Mystery of the Reward v6
Our Regeneration is a work of the Spirit, but that does not negate our responsibility to walk in holiness.
1 Peter 1:14–16 ESV
14 As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, 15 but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”


Ephesians 3:1–6 ESV
1 For this reason I, Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus on behalf of you Gentiles— 2 assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God’s grace that was given to me for you, 3 how the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly. 4 When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit. 6 This mystery is that the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.
Author: Paul
Audience: All the Saints / The Gentile Believers
Content: v3-4 All insight into Christ as Savior is provided by the Spirit
Ephesians 3:4 ESV
4 When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ,
Read what? The “mystery” made known to Paul by revelation that he has written about.
Gal 1:11 through Gal 2:10: Paul recounts his conversion, the beginning of his ministry, and in chapter 2 speaks of going to confirm with the pillars in Jerusalem that he was preaching a correct gospel.
Galatians 2:1–2 ESV
1 Then after fourteen years I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, taking Titus along with me. 2 I went up because of a revelation and set before them (though privately before those who seemed influential) the gospel that I proclaim among the Gentiles, in order to make sure I was not running or had not run in vain.
Ephesians 3:5 ESV
5 which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit.
Is the Holy Spirit in the old testament?
Arthur W. Pink’s book, “The Holy Spirit,” deals with this in chapter 6.
There is insight given to the apostles and prophets, but what about the common man?
The Spirit teaches through a select few. While He can give direct instruction, the pattern of discipleship is what God has chosen to use to build His church.
With all this in mind, Paul says in v4 that WE can perceive (understand) his insight. He approaches this idea with two assumptions:
Paul assumes his audience has a baseline understanding of the Scriptures.
Paul assumes his audience has an incomplete understanding of the Scriptures.
So how can we better know the fullness of the Gospel? By studying!


Study the Scriptures for Insight

Illustration: Understanding how a thing works makes it easier to do.
Insight is from the Spirit, but the primary way God speaks to His people is through His revealed Word.
Faith is actionable belief, and better insight into who God is causes us to act in accordance with the Word
Insight into the character of God
Not just His wisdom, But his omniscience
Justice and Mercy
Love and Wrath
We are regenerated into a people who fear and love our God.
Insight into the convictions of the Apostles
1 Timothy 1:15–16 ESV
15 The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. 16 But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life.
Titus 2:15–3:2 ESV
15 Declare these things; exhort and rebuke with all authority. Let no one disregard you. 1 Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work, 2 to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people.
2 Peter 1:5–9 ESV
5 For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, 6 and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins.
We are regenerated into a people who respond to Godly teaching. (How rebellious were we before!)
Insight into the collaboration of the Saints
Acts 2:42–47 ESV
42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. 46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.
2 Corinthians 9:7–9 ESV
7 Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work. 9 As it is written, “He has distributed freely, he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever.”
2 Corinthians 9:12 ESV
12 For the ministry of this service is not only supplying the needs of the saints but is also overflowing in many thanksgivings to God.
We are regenerated into a people who participate in the family of God.
My conviction is that we are not celebrating the Lord’s table weekly as we were called to do. I don’t know what exactly that will look like for us, but it’s a change I intend to see happen before the year is over.

Study the Scriptures for Illumination

Illumination of the Law
Do you understand God’s commandments?
By the illumination of God’s law, we clearly see our sinfulness and need for a Savior.
Illumination of the Prophets
Do you understand God’s revealed power?
By the illumination of the Prophets, we see that God is able to do whatever He says He will do.
Illumination of the Gospels
Do you understand the events surrounding the life of our Savior?
Virgin birth, baptism, His teaching of the law, His teaching in parables, His miraculous works?
The Death and Resurrection
By the illumination of the Gospels we see a hope for eternal life.
Illumination of the Epistles
Do you understand the practical application of the Gospel in your day-to-day life?
By the illumination of the apostle’s teaching, we reject the old flesh and fully embrace the new life.
Illumination of the Apocalypse
Do you understand that judgement is coming?
By the illumination of God’s judgement, we go to make disciples in all nations.
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