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Faithlife

Ephesians Part V

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"THE EPISTLE TO THE EPHESIANS"
1. We have seen Paul describe how richly blessed we are in Christ in the"doxology" of verses 3-14 in this first chapter of Ephesians.
2. Paul now proceeds to reveal what sort of things he has been praying for on behalf the Ephesians...
a. Paul does the same thing in his epistles to the Philippians and Colossians - cf. ;
b. In noticing such prayers, I find it helpful to remember that Paul is writing by inspiration
3. With that thought in mind (i.e., Paul's prayer is God's desire for us as well), let's take a close look at this prayer...
Ephesians 1:15–20 ESV
For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places,
Ephesians 1:
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[Beginning with a recognition of their faith and love (verse 15) and a mention of his unceasing thankfulness for them (verse 16), Paul then states that in his prayers his concern for the Ephesians is...]
Jeremiah 9:23–24 ESV
Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord.”
John 17:3 ESV
And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.
2 Timothy 1:7–9 ESV
for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began,
-- Of course, we are speaking here of knowledge that comes through close and personal association, not casual awareness
[Do you "know" God? Many people know "about" God, but it is God's will that we come to know "Him". Through the Word of God as we have it today, you can allow the "spirit of wisdom and revelation" give you that "saving knowledge" of God Himself!
We now observe that Paul's concern for the Ephesians included their"eyes being opened"...]
2 Timothy 2:14 ESV
Remind them of these things, and charge them before God not to quarrel about words, which does no good, but only ruins the hearers.
2 Timothy 2:14 ESV
Remind them of these things, and charge them before God not to quarrel about words, which does no good, but only ruins the hearers.
1 Timothy 2:12 ESV
I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet.
1 Peter 2:9 ESV
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
Ephesians 2:19–22 ESV
So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.
[Do we appreciate the "hope" of God's calling? Again, it is through the revealed Word of God (like this epistle to the Ephesians) that we are able to have our own eyes enlightened. There is no reason for us to be ignorant of our wonderful "hope"!
In addition to their knowing the "hope of His calling", Paul prays...]
Ephesians 1:5 ESV
he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,
Ephesians 1:11 ESV
In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will,
Ephesians 1:14 ESV
who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.
Ephesians 2:7 ESV
so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
Ephesians 2:12–13 ESV
remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.
Ephesians 3:7 ESV
Of this gospel I was made a minister according to the gift of God’s grace, which was given me by the working of his power.
[Again we see how Paul by writing this epistle is attempting to help answer his own prayer for the Ephesians.
There is one more thing that Paul wanted the Ephesians, and if the way he elaborates is an indication of its importance then Paul more than all else prayed...]
(cf. )
Ephesians 2:1–6 ESV
And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,
Colossians 2:12–13 ESV
having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead. And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses,
Matthew 9:2–8 ESV
And behold, some people brought to him a paralytic, lying on a bed. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Take heart, my son; your sins are forgiven.” And behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, “This man is blaspheming.” But Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, “Why do you think evil in your hearts? For which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—he then said to the paralytic—“Rise, pick up your bed and go home.” And he rose and went home. When the crowds saw it, they were afraid, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to men.
Ephesians 3:16 ESV
that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being,
John 3:5 ESV
Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.
;
Titus 3:5 ESV
he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit,
Romans 8:12–13 ESV
So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.
Ephesians 3:20 ESV
Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us,
Ephesians 3:16 ESV
that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being,
Ephesians 6:10 ESV
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might.
Ephesians 6:11 ESV
Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.
Ephesians 6:11–13 ESV
Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.
Ephesians 6:14–18 ESV
Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints,
CONCLUSION
But before growth can occur, there must be life. Have you been "made alive together with Christ"? - cf. ;
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