Notes from Ephesians 1:1-3

When God visited North Korea

Ephesians 1:1-3

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God,

To the saints who are in Ephesus, and are faithful in Christ Jesus:

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places,


Paul wrote the book of Ephesians when he was in prison. Under trial, Paul still showed concern with the concerns of the church rather than his own. In fact, Paul said it is the will of God he is where he is as he was writing the letter.


Another thing to observe is how Paul addresses his brothers and sisters as saints. In our Catholic background, we might not be able to reconcile why he would address ordinary church members as saints. Nine times in the letter, Paul addresses the people of God as saints. The word saint is used in the New Testament to people who choose to follow Jesus. The word saint means “one who has been set apart.” It is related to sanctification which means to be set apart. To be a saint is to be sanctified and changed by God’s grace to Christ-likeness.

So how do we become saints? We see in verse 1-2, two keywords – faithful and grace. By the grace of God, we become saints, and we live faithfully for the Lord. Grace is used 12x in the book of Ephesians. Grace is the kindness of God towards us – the undeserving people because of our sin and rebellion against God.


In verse 3, we were blessed with every spiritual blessing we need in Christ. Paul is challenging the worldview of the people during his time that material wealth is more valuable than spiritual blessings. Instead, he told the church that we are blessed because of the spiritual blessings we have received in Christ.

What does it mean to be blessed in heavenly places? Since we are no longer looking to earth to fill us, we are encouraged by Paul to operate in the kingdom of God, using kingdom principles to live our lives here on earth. We are called to operate in the spiritual realm as we live here on earth. Our values and worldview would be different from that of the world. We don’t just add faith in Christ in what we do; we rather live our lives in Christ knowing that is more than enough for us.

Bonus: I just published my booklet “When God visited North Korea: The Pyongyang Revival” and is available in Amazon Kindle. Click here to get it for free




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