Rooted & Fruitful (Part 10)

Speaker: Dalton Sim


This week, we focus on Ephesians 2:11-18. 

As Gentiles or non-Jews, we all were once far from God’s Kingdom, but the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ brought us near. Recall that in Ephesians 1:7 and 2:1-10, Paul described how this happened, how He purchased our redemption and forgiveness. We learnt about the good news, that even though we deserved the wrath of God for our sins, Jesus took the full weight of that punishment for us through the cross. We have been reconciled to God in Christ.

And as we will see today, it is in Christ that the people of God are also reconciled with each other, both Jew and Gentile. And you and me.


  1. Do you think laws are beneficial? Share some examples.

    a. In what ways might (some of) these laws be wrongly applied?

  2. Read Ephesians 2:11-13. Notice that in these verses, Paul stressed the word, ‘remember’.

    a. What does Paul want his readers to remember? Why?

    b. When might we require similar reminders?

  3. Ephesians 2:11 made reference to the Jewish ritual of circumcision. This sacred rite was undertaken to seal the covenant God had made with the Jews/Israelites. Through it, the circumcised demonstrated their separation from the world and their consecration to the special relationship of being in the family of God.

    As Acts 15:1-31 described, one of the central questions facing early Christ-followers, as Christianity spread beyond the Jewish people, was whether the Gentiles needed to undergo circumcision and observe the Jewish law in its entirety. Through the experience of the apostles coupled with the writings of the Jewish prophets, the early Christian community resolved that there was no compulsory need to be circumcised, as it was by the grace of God through faith in Christ that people entered the Kingdom of God.

    a. In his writings, Paul consistently had to downplay the role of circumcision. Why do you think the importance of the ritual was so difficult to give up?

    b. Controversy over the place of the ritual drove Jewish and Gentile Christians apart. Are there similar attitudes or practices in our church today that threaten to disrupt unity?

    (i) How (if at all) might we differentiate between attitudes or practices that are important and those that are unimportant to the Christian faith?

  4. Read Ephesians 2:14-18. Notice that one of the emphases here is on peace, which in New Testament usage, has meanings that range from the absence of war to “peace, friendship, happiness, well-being, prosperity, health, luck, kindness, salvation.”

    a. What does peace mean in this passage? What does this tell us about God’s heart and His intent for His people?

    b. Do we share God’s heart for His people? Reflect on your attitude and actions towards your siblings in Christ. 

    (i) Do you need to take steps to mend some broken relationships?

    (ii) Are there ways that you can work for peace among Christ-followers?

  5. Reflect on today’s passage in its entirety. How (if at all) might it change our attitudes and actions towards those who do not (yet) follow Christ?


The effects of sin have led to humankind being at enmity with God and inevitably at enmity with ourselves, with one another, and in a certain sense, with all the world. But see what the Lord Jesus Christ has done! In Matthew’s account of the moment of Jesus’ death, “the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom” (27:51). His reference to the curtain of the temple is one that would have been understood by every Jewish reader. It is a reference to the veil between the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies, and the fact that it was torn in two from top to bottom indicates in as graphic a way as possible that as the result of Christ’s death, sin has been removed as a barrier between man and God, reconciliation has been achieved, and the way is now open for anyone to approach God—if he or she comes through faith in Jesus Christ and his work.

Bear in mind that the veil between ourselves and God drops only for those who are in Christ. And if we are in Christ, then there can never be a barrier between us and others who are also in Christ, otherwise Christ would be divided. If we are in Him, we are in the same place. We are members of one body, and peace has been restored between all who are members of it. In God’s eyes, we are one with every other believer. John 13:35, “by this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” Our unity as believers is a major factor in our witness to the world. 

Knowing this, how do we treat one another in our church community?

Do we extend kindness, demonstrate compassion or do we avoid or distance ourselves from others just because they are not like us?

Do we attempt to reach out to someone who is outside of our circle or do we keep to our inner circle of friends all the time and stay in a ‘holy huddle’ for comfort? 

Examine your heart. Which of God’s children have you treated less than an equal?

Boice, J. M. (1988). Ephesians: an expositional commentary (p. 85). Ministry Resources Library.


For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility…” – Ephesians 2:14 (NIV)