40 Days of study

A human being lives, but he is given life.

Ephesians 3:1-21

Please be patient with me, I am trying new formatting ideas and some are better than others. My post yesterday went out about 10 hours early. I will be done this week and things should settle down, at least for a while.

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Day 5

Ephesians 3:1-21

New King James Version (NKJV)

The Mystery Revealed

1 For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for you Gentiles— 2 if indeed you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which was given to me for you, 3 how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I have briefly written already, 4 by which, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ), 5 which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets: 6 that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel, 7 of which I became a minister according to the gift of the grace of God given to me by the effective working of His power.

Purpose of the Mystery

8 To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9 and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ; 10 to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places, 11 according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12 in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him. 13 Therefore I ask that you do not lose heart at my tribulations for you, which is your glory.

Appreciation of the Mystery

14 For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, 16 that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, 17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height 19 to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

20 Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, 21 to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

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My Thoughts:

  1. Let’s start with (v. 1-3) where Paul says “For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for you Gentiles if indeed you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which was given to me for you, how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I have briefly written already,”
    1. “the prisoner” This is one of the three times we see Paul refer to his imprisonment in Ephesians. He is tell his readers that it is better to be imprisoned for a righteous cause than to be free for failing to do his duty.(Eph. 4:1, 6:12)
    2. “of Christ Jesus” a prisoner for Christ.
    3. “for you Gentiles” He was in prison for standing up for the rights of the Gentiles to worship (Acts 21:28).
  1. I can understand Paul’s comments here in (V. 8) He says “To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ”
    1. I was there and by the grace of God, He picked me up and said “follow me and I will make you fishers of men”. This is the first verse I can remember reading from the Bible are my calling (Isa. 43:10)
    2. “that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ.” Paul was one of the persecutors of the saints; he was always in amazement that he was chosen to proclaim the truth of God’s message (Acts 23:1). Humility is not a negative quality; it is consonant with the knowledge of personal victory over sin and growth in grace.
  1. I would like to finish with (v. 17) “that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love,”
    1. “Paul is coming to the close of his pray and asking “that Christ may dwell in your hearts” to be at home this is an Idea of permanency and added to that strength. Christ do not want to come over for just a visit, when He comes He comes to stay (John 14:23), (Rev. 3:20).
    2. “through faith” it is through faith that opens our hearts and allows Christ to come in (Romans 4:3).

Personal Reflection and Discussion

  1. What are your thoughts on verse 10? How do you see this verse playing a role in the vindication of God’s character, which Satan challenged?
  2. We talk about faith a lot, how does reading about Paul’s experiences and the experiences of others, help you in your struggle with faith.
  3. Are there any other things you see in the text?

Prayer Activities

  1. Call your Partner and discuss this devotional.
  2. Continue to have a prayer list and let the new people know you are praying for them.
  3. Pray with them and ask for the following;
    1. For God to bring understanding to your life.
    2. For God to strengthen your faith in Him.
    3. For the individuals on your pray list.
  4. For today use the following Bible verse in your prayer (Habakkuk 2:2-4)

About bobh6

I am Seventh-day Adventist pastor in the Texas Panhandle

4 comments on “Ephesians 3:1-21

  1. Amalia
    August 14, 2011

    Paul is building on Chpt 2:10-22 where he talks about Jesus taking away the barrier vs15 “having abolishef in His fleah the enmity, that is, the law of commandments cantained in ordinances, so as to create in Him one new man from the two, thus making peace….vrs 18 ” For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the father.” He reaffirms their calling as gentiles into the family of Christ and stregthens them by reminding them that being united as believers, Gentile and Jew, but more importantly directly with God; Him in us.

    Love vrs 17-20! That we may be strenghten in the inner man, that Jesus in us through faith may firmly ground us in love to better understand the width, length, and depth of the love of Christ which passes all knowledge and understanding; that we may be filled with the fullness of God. And to Him who is able to do these awesome things above all that we could even ask for, hope for or think of, through the Holy Spirit, to God be the glory in us by Jesus and not just now but forever and ever, amen. What a difference being truely united in Christ makes. What a victory we partake. This is the mystery of God’s exceedingly greatness and riches in grace that He gained on the cross and freely gives to all who sincerely ask. It starts in Jesus and ends in Jesus, but the glory goes to the unity of God who work it all out.

    • bobh6
      August 15, 2011

      I like your thought, thanks

  2. Rosi
    August 14, 2011

    Paul uses a lot of extra words to say a very simple thing. At least this is my thinking. Still what he says is so true and so needed. He speaks from God. Verse ten to me means that we,with wisdom from God, should live our lives as to “tell” the angels of God’s grace. Paul talks of Gods mystery and mysterious ways and this is one of them. Seems the angels too are always watching and learning from us about God’s wisdom. If that doesn’t blow your mind. To think we can teach angels. Wow. I really like verse 19 too. The love of our Saviour is soo great, we cannot even beging to understand. Praise God for that love.

    • bobh6
      August 15, 2011

      I look at Paul’s use of words like this. Being a preacher if he just said it very short and understanding way. Then his sermon would only last 5 minutes, then what would he do for the extra 40 min, lol. And Verse 19 does make you wonder if even after His return will we ever truly understand. I think through Christ we will get a deeper understanding but never a total understanding.

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This entry was posted on August 14, 2011 by in 40 days, Ephesians, Prayer and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

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