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Summary: We have the amazing opportunity to fall head over heals in love with God, and in loving Him to overflow with “the fullness of God.” How can we love God, let alone experience His fullness in our lives except that we get to know God—as Father, Son and Holy

LIVING IN CHRIST – Getting to Know God

Ephesians 3:14-19 NIV

14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom his whole 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 saints, 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.

INTRODUCTION:

We have the opportunity to know God—He has made Himself know to us. Will we turn God a cold shoulder? Or will we rejoice that we are “Getting to know God. Getting to know all about God.”

Ephesians 3:19 NIV

And to know this love that surpasses knowledge — that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

We have the amazing opportunity to fall head over heals in love with God, and in loving Him to overflow with “the fullness of God.” How can we love God, let alone experience His fullness in our lives except that we get to know God—as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

I. Getting to Know God Our Father.

Ephesians 3:14-15 NIV

14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name.

1. We cannot overlook that we can know God as OUR FATHER.

a) Paul makes reference to God as Father 42 times, and 8 of these occur in Ephesians, more than any other of Paul’s letters. Outside of the Gospels only the epistle of 1 John refers to God as Father more than Ephesians. Yet the combined 18 references in Ephesians and 1 John to God as Father is more than the entire Old Testament combined!

o In all of the Old Testament there are only 16 possible references that refer to God as Father and 6 of these look to the coming of the Messiah—that is Jesus. (Deuteronomy 32:6; 2 Samuel 7:14; 1 Chronicles 17:13; 22:10; 28:6; 29:10; Psalm 2:7; 68:5; 89:26; Isaiah 9:6; 63:16; 64:8; Jeremiah 3:4, 19; Malachi 1:6; 2:10).

o The New Testament has 252 references to God as our Father and about 180 of these or roughly 2 out of every 3 are said by Jesus!

b) Jesus initiated a radical idea among His disciples and the Jews of His day that God could be known as FATHER. Specifically that God was His Father, and in turn that His followers could likewise know God as their Father. Remember when Jesus taught His disciples how to pray He told them to pray like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be thy name” (Matthew 6:9; see also Luke 11:2).

c) Jesus claimed God as His Father!

John 5:17-18 NIV

17 Jesus said to them, "My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working." 18 For this reason the Jews tried all the harder to kill him; not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.

d) Through Jesus unique relationship with God the Father, the Father could be known by us.

Matthew 11:27 NIV

All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.

e) Jesus makes God our Father!

John 20:17 NIV

Jesus said, "Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet returned to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, 'I am returning to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'"

f) Paul’s picks up Jesus’ usage of God as Father. First, in the unique relationship between God the Father and God the Son and secondly in that we can know God as OUR FATHER. Ephesians has been called “Paul’s Letter of the Father.”

Ephesians 1:2-3 NIV

2 Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,

Ephesians 1:17 NIV

. . . the glorious Father.

Ephesians 2:18 NIV

For through Him we both have access to the Father

Ephesians 3:14-15 NIV

. . . I kneel before the Father.

Ephesians 4:6 NIV

One God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.

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