Summary: 10 of 11. Paul closes his direction to the Ephesian church by encouraging them to find their strength in the Lord. But where or how do God's people find strength to stand victorious? God’s people acquire strength to stand victorious thru a distinct...
STRENGTH To STAND-X—Ephesians 6:10-20
Paul urged the Ephesian church to find their strength in the Lord by effectively arming themselves.
The church must acquire God’s strength to stand victorious.
Where & How can the church find strength to stand victorious?
12 distinctions of the Christian soldier’s strength for victory.
We have previously found that—
...God’s people acquire strength to stand victorious..or..acquire victory thru a distinct...
11—God’s people acquire strength to stand victorious in a distinct...
COMMUNICATION & DIRECTION(:18)
:18—“praying always with all prayer & supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance & supplication for all the saints--
Eph. 6:18[NASB]—“With all prayer & petition pray at all times in the Spirit, & with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance & petition for all the saints,”
“Prayer” is not a comparative with the soldier’s armor, as are truth, righteousness, peace, faith, salvation, & the word. This is because each piece must be ‘put on with prayer’ as the hymn declares. Without prayer there can be no readiness in equipping nor any victory in the end.
Given the previous military attachments to our spiritual armaments, the activity of “prayer” 'could possibly' be representative of the soldier’s close conversation with his comrades in arms as they interact with one another & are involved in the give & take of the same skirmish & battle.
“Prayer” 'could' also 'possibly' be representative of the soldier’s ear ‘bent’ in anticipation of exactly following the marching orders from his superior(s). Yet such conversation is never as intensely personal as is “prayer.”
For the Christian there is to be a constant conversation in seeking God’s will for him/herself & others in the line of duty. Before putting on the whole armor of God(:11, 13) the preparing(-ed) Christian ready for spiritual wrestlings/battle(:12) against wickedness, is already immersed in conversation with God.
The Christian’s “prayer” is manifold(“all”/“at all times”) & all encompassing in approaching & bringing a ‘withstanding’(:13) thru the wrestling/battle. It involves general prayer as well as direct petition for specific need.
“All prayer” is to be exercised/levied/exacted “in” the power of “the Spirit.”
This implies that prayer ‘can’ become mechanical & mere meaningless repetition of words(Mat. 6:7) learned by habit/rote or mechanical repetition(Isa. 29:13) as we are taught our ABCs or The Pledge of Allegiance. But in order for prayer to be effective(Js. 5:16) it must be offered as what it is—A seeking for & relating of God’s will(1Jn. 5:14-15).
Isa. 29:13[NKJV]—“Therefore the LORD said: “Inasmuch as these people draw near with their mouths And honor Me with their lips, But have removed their hearts far from Me, And their fear toward Me is taught by the commandment of men,”
Isa. 29:13[NASB]—“Then the Lord said, “Because this people draw near with their words And honor Me with their lip service, But they remove their hearts far from Me, And their reverence for Me consists of tradition learned by rote,
Mat. 6:7—“And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.”
Js. 5:16—“Confess your trespasses to one another, & pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.”
1Jn. 5:14-15—“Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.”
“All the saints” are to receive a special attention & consideration in our “prayers.” And our “prayers” are to meet the needs of those “saints” thru “all perseverance” & in “supplication,” considering their specific needs. This requires our thoughtfulness to nurture relationships with our brothers & sisters in Christ.
“Praying”—proseucomai—Verb—1) To offer prayers, to pray. Strong—To pray to God, i.e. Supplicate, worship.
From—prov—1) To the advantage of; 2) At, near, by; 3) To, towards, with, with regard to. Strong—a preposition of direction; Forward to, i.e. Toward(the side of, i.e. pertaining to); By the side of, i.e. Near to; The place, time, occasion, or respect, which is the destination of the relation, i.e. Whither or for which it is predicated.—&—eucomai—middle voice of a primary verb; To wish; by implication--To pray to God.
*“Always/At All Times/On All Occasions/In Every Season.”—en panti kairwi—RWP—“At all seasons”(en panti kairwi). “On Every Occasion”
“With/By”2X(See :14, 15, 16)—dia—Prep.—1) Through—1a) of place—1a1) With, 1a2) In, 1b) of time—1b1) Throughout, 1b2) During, 1c) of means—1c1) By, 1c2) By the means of; 2) Through—2a) The ground or reason by which something is or is not done—2a1) By reason of, 2a2) On account of, 2a3) Because of for this reason, 2a4) Therefore, 2a5) On this account. Strong—a primary preposition denoting the channel of an act; Through(in very wide applications, local, causal, or occasional).