Ephesians 3

Ephesians 3

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The Mystery of the Gospel Revealed

For this reason I, Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus on behalf of you Gentiles—assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God’s grace that was given to me for you, how the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly. When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, 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. 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.

Of this gospel I was made a minister according to the gift of God’s grace, which was given me by the working of his power. To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to bring to light for everyone what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God, who created all things, so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him. So I ask you not to lose heart over what I am suffering for you, which is your glory.

Prayer for Spiritual Strength

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

(ESV)


Ephesians 3 Commentary

by Hank Workman

What do you long for?  What are the prayers ever on your mind and whispered from your lips? Where do the burdens of your heart take you?

For 3 chapters Paul has spoken truth about the church and her role.  It’s the groundwork for where he turns next: how we as members of the church are to live and be.  He ends this section with a beautiful doxology, a song of praise to God who has done the most tremendous things up to this point.

When you think of God’s plan for the church and what it would become it was beyond imagination. It was something no one with the greatest of wisdom could have thought possible.  Only God is able to bring about such works beyond anything imaginable.

“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works with us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.”

Ephesians 3:20-21

Only God can and does do things far beyond our own ability to think or ask.  Consider, we can look at all the good things God has done for us so far – God can do above that.  We can imagine things, dream and wish for things beyond any experience we’ve had up to this point – God can do above that. We can base our desires upon the good things He has brought before us and even our own ability to name them – God can do above that.

Notice, it’s the power that lives and works in us. This is not something we wait for when we arrive in heaven, His power works in us now!  Paul has asked for the readers to have spiritual strength, Jesus dwelling within, knowledge of the mystery of God’s love and the very fullness He can bring to our lives. These belong to the children of God.  But we must believe in these things; we must claim these things. In fact, through such works of faith, truly that’s what it is, He is able to do far more beyond what we could ever imagine.

This is to His absolute glory.  When we understand and walk with such eternal purpose God and the Lord Jesus are brought tremendous glory and we fulfill our duty of giving praise and glorifying God.

I opened with questions and want to circle back to these again.  What do you long for?  What are the prayers ever on your mind and whispered from your lips?  Furthermore, where do the burdens of your heart take you?  God who has established the church, brought about miracles and His working power in every known situation hears your heart and knows your desires.  

What you have experienced so far, He can do far above that.  So, in these things you carry – know and believe He can do immeasurably more than we could ever ask or think.  Rest in this truth.  Stand on His promises.  It will be all toward the glory of God and Jesus and the pure advancement of His Kingdom.


Ephesians 3 Commentary

by Brad Boyles

It’s one of my favorite prayers in Scripture. Ephesians 3:14-21.

Once you really see and experience how much Jesus loves you, everything will begin to change.  The love of Christ is wide enough to save anyone who repents. His love is deep enough to forgive the most horrific sins. His love is long enough to take us through eternity. And his love is high enough to reach into the heavens.

Paul is praying for us to investigate and experience the four complete dimensions of Christ’s love. He’s daring you to try and find an end to His love in any way, shape or form! Investigate and experience the dimensions of His love. And he writes that we would experience it together with all the saints (that means all believers). So, it is not an individual pursuit, but one that is experienced with other like-minded people. He asks for us to be rooted so we are growing in His love. Then, he asks that we are grounded so we are unshakably protected within His love.

And finally, here’s the beautiful ending.

and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.

Ephesians 3:19 NASB

The fullness of God. That’s the destination, right? I can’t even begin to explain what that means or looks like practically. However, I really like this commentary by Adam Clarke.

“Among all the great sayings in this prayer, this is the greatest. To be FILLED with God is a great thing; to be filled with the FULLNESS of God is still greater; but to be filled with ALL the fullness of God utterly bewilders the sense and confounds the understanding.”

Adam Clarke

Let us get filled up to all the fullness of God.

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