Summary: What kind of power does God have? How is that power given to those that belong to Jesus? The answers may surprise you but in the end they will encourage you to give your life even more to the most powerful person who ever lived.
Paul has been telling the Ephesians about his prayers for them. Though he uses many words to say it, his real prayer is that they would be able to perceive in their minds three things:
The hope of their calling
The riches of their inheritance
The “immeasurable greatness of His power to us who believe, according to the working on His vast strength”
God accepted Jesus’ death as a substitution for our death (which we earned as the result of our rebellion against God)
The way back to a relationship with God was secured
We enter that relationship by going through Jesus’ death, burial, and then resurrection so we get the same life the Father gave Jesus.
It is this strength that he concentrates on in verses 20 through 23. And as we go through this I want you to realize that this great power of God is directed towards you who belong to Jesus.
“Demonstrates” is the same word used in verse 19. It is the word energeo and means “working.”
How is God using His power on behalf of those who belong to Him? The supreme demonstration of that power is the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the seating of Him at the right hand of God.
The Resurrection – is a singularly unique event. Never before in human history had someone been resurrected. Yes, some had been raised from the dead, but they were resuscitated, not resurrected. When Jesus raised Lazarus, his body had been healed and his life returned, but it still meant he would die a natural death.
The wording suggests that out of all of the people who ever died, God raised Jesus. This has huge implications for us.
Let’s look at how Paul put this in Romans 6:
Romans 6:3 “Or are you unaware that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we were buried with Him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too may walk in a new way of life. 5 For if we have been joined with Him in the likeness of His death, we will certainly also be in the likeness of His resurrection. 6 For we know that our old self was crucified with Him in order that sin’s dominion over the body may be abolished, so that we may no longer be enslaved to sin, 7 since a person who has died is freed from sin’s claims. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with Him, 9 because we know that Christ, having been raised from the dead, will not die again. Death no longer rules over Him.”
Notice: our sin, and the debt we owe for that sin, was nailed to the cross (Colossians 2:14). You identify with Jesus in His death, Jesus identifies with you in His resurrection. That means:
We will never die (Rom 6:9)
It is a new quality of life, not just quantity.
Do anything Jesus did and more because He sent His Spirit to live in your hearts.
Do “greater works” because instead of one Man, there are billions of us.
What you can do is limited only by these two factors:
More than that even; God seated Jesus at His right hand in the heavens. That means Jesus reigns over the universe, both the one we see, and the one we cannot see.
Psa. 110:1 “This is the declaration of the LORD to my Lord: “Sit at My right hand until I make Your enemies Your footstool.”
Jesus was given authority—authority over what?
Ruler (He is in first place)
Authority (He has the right to do anything He wants)
Power (He has the ability to exercise the authority)
Dominion (word used rarely, means “power or position as a lord”)
Given the struggle between the forces of God and the forces of the enemy, Paul may be talking about the fact that nothing can stand in the way of you entering into and appropriating this new life: over evil, Satan, sin, and this age.
Title given: no one in heaven or earth has a title more important than that of Jesus.
Paul concludes the verse by letting us know that this power, this authority, this name of Jesus continues not only now, but on and on for all of eternity.
The power working to raise Jesus and place Him in this position of power is also at work in you as a member of His body.
Here Paul quotes Psalm 110:1 directly. Jesus has authority over every power, every authority, over your life, over your dreams, values—everything. “Under His feet” suggests the victor in a battle. Jesus won over sin; the spoils of that victory was you.