Ephesians 1:18

. . . that ye may know what is the hope of his calling . . .

Before we can fully understand and appreciate what The Hope is, we must first delve into the question of His calling. What exactly is His calling, and where does it lead? By exploring His calling, we can uncover the hope that lies within our own calling. As believers in Christ, we are closely identified with Him, and this identification is symbolized through our baptism, not in water but in all He accomplished in our calling. The baptism cannot be a baptism of water, for Eph 4:5 says, One Lord, one faith,  one baptism, not two baptisms, one of water, one of spirit. Which one do you choose?  Now let's dive into the context of Ephesians to gain a deeper understanding.

Our exploration begins with Ephesians 1:18, but as we look forward to Ephesians 1:20-21, we witness the resurrection of Christ, and His exaltation to the right hand of God in heavenly places, and His supreme authority over all principality, power, might, dominion, and every name that exists, both in this age and the age to come. Everything is placed under His feet, and He is the Head over all things to the church, which is His body, His fullness.

It is important to note that there is no mention here of Christ being a high priest in the heavens, taking the throne of His father David, or becoming the King of kings and Lord of lords. These roles are to be fulfilled during the dispensation of the promises made to Israel, and those who were part of that dispensation will gain their place in the promised land to be given to Abraham in the resurrection. They anticipate a glorious nation in the millennial kingdom on earth and, if they are overcomers, a position of authority under the great King in the Heavenly Jerusalem. They will look forward to His coming and their gathering together as part of their hope.

However, in Ephesians Chapter 1, there is no such context, and therefore, these aspects of another dispensation now in abeyance cannot be part of His calling; consequently, they cannot be part of our hope either.

Our hope is undeniably connected to His exalted position in the Heavenly Places, where He has made us sit together with Him. We who have the adoption and are blessings according to Eph. 1:3-4 and remain faithful can also receive The Prize of The High Calling and rule and reign with Him.

When we are exhorted to walk worthy of our calling, it is with these heavenly realities in mind. God in Christ Jesus has truly made our calling and election sure!

Furthermore, the hope of His calling is intertwined with a promise made in Him before the overthrow of the world. No other believers are called before but are called since. This promise has no connection with the promises made to Abraham and is not mentioned in relation to that dispensation. This distinction is because of the promises made unto Abraham, and the blessings are to be enjoyed upon the reconciled earth. Our calling is to heavenly places. Therefore, it was not revealed until later, specifically in Ephesians 3:6, 2 Timothy 1:1, and Titus 1:2. Our calling is directly related to the church, not the earthly kingdom. There is a significant difference between the two.

Although we do not yet see Christ fully manifest, as He currently sits in The Heaven of heavens in the Shekinah Glory at His Father's Right Hand, waiting for the time to appear. Soon that time will come, and He will be manifested in Glory. And when that happens, the Church, which is His Body, will manifest with Him, and our Hope will be realized.  There in the Heavens, He will be adored by the heavenly host. He is The Head of The Body and all creation, but when He appears, all will know He is the Head far above all and Crown Him there. Once again, we see how our hope is intimately linked with His calling. Therefore, to understand the hope of our calling, we must first grasp the His calling. The confusion surrounding this matter arises from ignorance.

Ephesians 1:18

Unveiling the Hope

In Ephesians 1:18, Paul fervently prays that we may come to know the hope of His calling. Naturally, this leads us to wonder, what exactly is the hope of His calling?

Before we can fully comprehend this hope, we must recognize the preparation that precedes it. The will of the Father (Ephesians 1:4), the redemptive work of the Son (Ephesians 1:7), and the testimony of the Spirit (Ephesians 1:13) lay the foundation for this prayer. At the outset, Paul implores that three gifts be bestowed upon the recipients: the spirit of wisdom, revelation, and enlightened eyes.

The prayer can be divided into three main parts: understanding the hope of His calling, comprehending the riches of the glory of His inheritance, and grasping the greatness of His power.

All these components provide us with the necessary framework to explore the topic at hand: the hope of His calling.

There was a time when Gentile believers who attended the synagogue had no hope (Ephesians 2:12). The hope primarily belonged to Israel. However, after the events of Acts 10, the Gentiles were able to share in the blessings of Israel through faith and grace. Nevertheless, during that period, Gentile believers were still devoid of hope.

Even in Acts 28, Paul found himself in chains for the hope of Israel, even after years of preaching to the Gentiles. That hope was Paul's hope.

However, Ephesians 2:13 marks a significant shift, signifying that Gentile believers have had hope ever since. Yet, the hope mentioned here is not the Gentiles' hope; it is God's hope. So, what exactly is this hope?

We find the connection between calling and hope in Ephesians 4:4. There is an undeniable close relationship between the two. Colossians 1:27 further illuminates this relationship by proclaiming that Christ, among the Gentiles, is the hope of glory. Ultimately, Christ Himself and his position in Glory is the hope. And wherever our hope lies, that is where our calling resides. Our calling is to be in the heavenly places where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Additionally, 2 Timothy 1:9 emphasizes that our calling is holy and is connected to a purpose that predates when the world began.

God chose us and called us even before the overthrow of the world.  (Ephesians 1:4).

Israel's calling is since the beginning of the world, and their calling and hope, are intrinsically tied to a land and a people on earth, eagerly awaiting the coming King of glory, but alas, they rejected Him, so God had to divorce her for two days (two thousand years).

After Israel's divorcment in Acts 28:28, salvation was taken from them and sent to the Gentiles, with a promise that they would hear what a deaf Israel could not. This ushered in new hope and calling. Therefore, we must not confuse the two. Today, we can preach Christ without referencing Israel or its covenants. We can preach Christ without focusing on the earth and the coming kingdom.

This hope of His calling was part of the secret or mystery that was hidden in God from ages and generations. However, it is now made manifest to the saints. These saints are members of one body, and this secret, known as the Dispensation of The Mystery, completes the Word of God. It is the final revelation.

So, what is our hope? When Christ, who is our life, is manifest out from the Shekinah Glory, we will also be revealed with Him, for we are now seated with Him in that Glory. His calling has elevated us in Him above all principality and power.

The hope of His calling reaches such a high spiritual level that there is limited historical detail regarding its complete fulfillment in terms of how, when, and where it will occur. However, we can anticipate the end of this dispensation when Israel resumes its role, this time recognizing Jesus Christ as the Messiah.

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