The Pastoral Prayer of Paul

Prayer of Paul for the Ephesians… a prayer for power of a different kind…

Ephesians 3

14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. 16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

sunset_prayer

To whom is Paul praying? v. 14-15 The Father… the one whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. The father is the head of the family – a family is known by its name. Our heavenly Father, creator of heaven and earth has named us to be His family – His children.

What kind of Father is He? What can this Father do? v. 16-17 He has glorious riches which can give us power and faith – power in our inner being and faith in our hearts. How? Power through the Holy Spirit and faith through Jesus Christ. What will this bring us? This should give us stability – to be rooted and established (standing firmly and unwavering).

To do what? v.18-19 This power enables us to ‘grasp’ – to hold on to (with all of God’s family of people) – hold on to what? To the amazing love that Christ has for us. What kind of love – the greatness – width/length/height/depth – the whole expanse and every dimension of the love that Jesus has for us – the love that led Him to be the babe in the manger, the sacrificial Lamb on the cross. the kind of love that surpasses understanding (more than the peace that passes human understanding). Indeed we need great power to ‘know’ and experience this great love that is beyond comprehension. When we do, it is equal to being ‘filled’ to the brim and overflowing of the ‘all the fullness of God’. Imagine yourself being filled with ‘fulness of an awesome God’ – must be quite overwhelming! Is it possible?

Yes it is. How? Why? v. 20-21 Because God is able (a familiar song I learned when I was young… He’s able, he’s able, I know my God is able..). Able to do what? God is able to ‘do Immeasurably MORE’ than all we ask or imagine… love beyond comprehension and power beyond imagination! Such is our God – He can do it! Imagine even when it is beyond imagination – imagine this great power in us… how can we do this? When we are rooted and truly experienced His great love for us… reflect on how and why Jesus died on the cross for you and me. How do we do this? We do this together with all other children of this God who gives us His name. The name that deserves all glory throughout the ages, forever and ever. Amen!

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