Monday, April 11, 2011

The Fullness of God (Ephesians 3:14-19)

Paul prays, in light of the awesome salvation he has described thus far in Ephesians, that the believers will obtain the Fullness of God. This is a huge request and involves a 3 or 4-step process in Paul’s prayer. In a sense it is a prayer for something already at our disposal. We simply need to recognize and depend on God for its fulfillment in our lives.

Paul begins with power. He prays that we will experience God’s power according to the riches of His glory. The riches of God’s glory are inexhaustible. Not only does God tap into the riches of His glory to grant us His power, but also the text implies that He makes the riches of His glory available to us. God’s inexhaustible might is available to work through us according to His will.

Where from does the power in the believer’s life stem? Beyond the riches of the glory of God, it stems from the Holy Spirit who lives in the “inner man.” When we say that the Holy Spirit indwells us we must remember it is not a part of the Holy Spirit, a mere portion. The Holy Spirit is fully God and as such omnipresent. The Holy Spirit fully indwells every believer. We have within us all of God in the person of Holy Spirit.

Not only that, but through faith, we are indwelled by Christ. This is not merely a request for believers to have faith and receive Christ. As believers, they have already done so. We all have the full measure of Christ within us as Christians already. However, this is a request for Him to be allowed full authority—permanent residence in the driver’s seat of our lives.

Just as we accept Christ as Savior through faith, we must also walk with Him through faith. A popular bumper sticker used to read, “God is my co-pilot.” That is no good. We do not want Christ to sit next to us observing our lives and decisions. We want Him in the driver’s seat guiding us to do His will and fulfill our potential—the plans He has for our lives.

But power is not just about world changing events or ideas. Specifically here Paul asks for power for the believer so they can experience Christ’s love in their lives; that we may be rooted and grounded in the love of Christ.

The love we experience in our daily lives pales in comparison. Parental love hits closer to the mark than other loves in many ways. Even so, we fail on our own to develop a human example of God’s love for the World. That is what we want to demonstrate through God’s power. When we begin to, then we start to know, to experience Paul’s third request in this prayer: for knowledge.

Paul prays that the believer will comprehend the breadth, the length, the height, and the depth and that we will comprehend the love of Christ that is unknowable. That is to say, it is so big; we can never exhaust the fullness of it. Paul is praying for the impossible, by human means. That is a good example to follow.

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