Summary: Paul’s prayer for the church is for widsom, revelation, and knowledge of God’s calling, God’s power, and Christ’s authority.
Series: Ephesians: How To Walk God’s Trial
Text: Ephesians 1:15-23
Title: “That We May Know”
• Paul’s prayer for this church and really for all believers is that we would grow in the wisdom, revelation, and knowledge of God’s calling, of God’s power, and of Christ’s authority.
I. Wisdom of God’s Calling (18)
• “the eyes of your understanding being enlightened;”
o Again Paul is speaking about our mind; our mind is our only reliable guide to understanding and carrying out God’s truth. (heart = mind).
o But Paul for more than just knowledge, he asks for understanding.
o Understanding is combining the what (knowledge) with they why.
• “that you may know what is the hope of His calling.”
o First of all we must begin with our calling to follow Christ.
John 10:2-4, 27-28 -- 2 But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice.
27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. 28 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.
o Secondly is our calling to serve God using those gifts and talents He has given us.
1 Thessalonians 2:12 -- 12 that you would walk worthy of God who calls you into His own kingdom and glory.
2 Timothy 1:9 -- 9 who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began,
o We have been called to serve, not to occupy 24 inches of pew space on Sunday morning!!!
• “what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints.”
o Why does Paul again remind us of our inheritance when speaking of our calling?
o For us knowing that through Christ the wealth of God will be ours to share one day should act to motivate us to get busy working for God.
o Christians serve God not out of a “have to” heart, but out of a “want to” one.
• However looking onto our inheritance also reminds us of our value in Christ.
o God sees us now as something valuable to Him that He now wants to share with us His glory and riches.
o This value comes not from within ourselves, but Christ in us.
II. Revelation of God’s Power (19-20a)
• Revelation simply means “unveiling.”
1. God’s Power in Us. (19)
o This is for all who believe, this is God’s mighty power that will carry us through our entire Christian walk.
o Illustration: Example of the atom. Atom’s are the smallest of God’s creations, one atom is less than 1 millionth of the thickness of a human hair. Any yet contained within that atom is a great source of power. The splitting of a uranium atom will power a nuclear submarine for over 33 years.
o If this kind of power is given to us then why do we so often feel run down and powerless.
o Answer: We don’t plug into the power source often enough.
1 Corinthians 1:18 -- 18 For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
Hebrews 1:3a -- 3 And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power.
o Cell phone example
2. God’s Power in Redemption. (20a)
• In order for God to create all He had to do was speak; but in order for God to redeem He had to suffer.
o The final act in our redemption was the greatest display of God’s power; the power to do the impossible and the same power that fills us is the power that empties the tomb.
o This is God’s assurance to us not only of our own resurrection, but in knowing that God will not spare anything in bringing His lost sheep back to Himself.
o Not even the laws of life and death can keep us from God.
Romans 8:35, 37-39 -- 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? … 37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.