Save Time and Preach Like Never Before. Try the new
1. Introduction (1:15-18)
2. The first eye opening petition is that the church might know the grace of Christ. (18a)
3. The second eye opening petition is that the church might know the glory of Christ. (18b)
4. The third eye opening petition is that the church might know the greatness of Christ (19-23)
5. Conclusion

Prayer is one of the most wonderful gifts that God gives us. What an awesome privilege it is to boldly approach the throne of our Maker with our petitions. Often times, our prayer life isnít what it ought to be. Many times we look to God as some sort of supernatural Santa Claus. Our prayers sound like Christmas lists. I want, I need, I gotta have. But I rejoice when I hear prayer requests that are concerned about the needs of others. That was the way Paul was. In almost every one of his letters to churches in the New Testament, Paul told the people he was praying for them. But how did he pray for them? Did he pray for their material well-being? No, he didnít seem much concerned about that. What about their health and physical well being? No, that wasnít his main concern either. If not those areas, what was his main concern about the people that he prayed for? Weíll see as we look at one of Paulís prayers.


As Paul is writing to the churches in Ephesus, he lets them know heís praying for them. These people are well known. In his travels, Paul has heard about their faith. Heís heard about their love. Other people were telling him about their faith in Jesus and their love for each other, and Paul thanked God for them. But not only did he thank God for them, he petitioned God for them as well. He petitioned God for wisdom and revelation. He asked that their eyes would be opened. Thatís my prayer as well. Itís my prayer that each of us here would have our eyes opened so we can see the fullness of who Jesus Christ is. In order that we might see, weíre going to look into Paulís prayer at three eye opening petitions for the church. The first eye opening petition is that the church might know the grace of Christ. Look with me at verse 18 for the first thing Paul prayed for:


Like Paul, I pray that we might know the grace of Christ. If I were to ask what grace means, I would probably get a good Sunday school answer. Something like, ďgrace is getting Godís unmerited favor.Ē Or, ďgrace is getting what we donít deserve and not getting what we do deserve.Ē Both of those are true. But grace is so much more. Grace is when, before the foundations of the worldóGod looked down into historyóa history He hadnít even created yet and saw you and me. He saw us dead in our trespasses and sins. He foreknew that, as Genesis 6:5 says, ďthat the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.Ē God knew that from before the foundations of the earth and He created us anyway. And He provided a