Reconciled by Christ – Ephesians 2:11–22

Read the Passage: Ephesians 2:11-22

Enmity in the Flesh (2:11–13)

In this letter Paul is encouraging the church, exhorting spiritual growth, and fostering Christian community—all by reminding the believers in Ephesus about their identity in Christ. After writing about salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Eph. 2:4–10, as he had done in Eph. 2:1–3, so here in Eph. 2:11–13 Paul again reminded the church about their pre-conversion condition. Continue reading Reconciled by Christ – Ephesians 2:11–22

Confession and Forgiveness – Psalm 51

Read the Passage: Psalm 51

Plea for Forgiveness (51:1–4)

As the superscript to this psalm notes, this passage is “a psalm of David when Nathan the prophet went to him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba.” The context of this Psalm, then, is David’s adultery with Bathsheba, his murder of Uriah, and Nathan’s subsequent confrontation of David (cf. 2 Sam. 11–12). Continue reading Confession and Forgiveness – Psalm 51

The Joy of Forgiveness – Psalm 32

Read the Passage: Psalm 32

Sin and Guilt (32:1–4)

Most scholars believe that Psalm 32 was written by David in the context of his sin with Bathsheba and consequent confrontation by the prophet Nathan (cf. 2 Sam. 11–12). If this is correct, then it is likely that David penned this psalm after writing Psalm 51, for in Psalm 51 David asks for forgiveness and in Psalm 32 David reflects upon having received forgiveness. Continue reading The Joy of Forgiveness – Psalm 32

Freedom and Forgiveness – Philemon

Read the Passage: Philemon

Author and Date: The book of Philemon is known as one of the prison epistles—along with Ephesians, Philippians, and Colossians—as Paul wrote these letters  between 60–63 AD from a Roman prison (cf. Acts 28:16, 30). Observe that Philemon is the only personal letter among the prison epistles, and one of just four personal letters of Paul in the Bible, the others being 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, and Titus. Continue reading Freedom and Forgiveness – Philemon