Tag Archive: ephesians 3


i have used this passage in a lot of preaches. It is possibly one of the greatest starting points of connection with God, or simply a helpful reminder when life is feeling a little overwhelming, as it tends to be at times…

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Ephesians 3.20-21

and i am wanting to focus on 20 and 21, but i really love the preceding passage as well as i think it sets it up so well:

14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name. 16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the saints,to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge–that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

# Christ dwelling in your heart through faith [reminds me of Colossians 1.27 – Christ in me, the hope of glory] – this is a huge and needing to be continually aware of promise.

# being strengthened with power through the Holy Spirit – so helpful if we remember where to look to for strength, ability and capacity

# being rooted and established in love which is also the most powerful reminder – Jesus pointed to Love as the greatest commandment and we need to keep going back to that as the place of starting and foundation for everything we do [else it all means nothing, see beginning of 1 Corinthians 13]

# grasping how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ – speaks for itself and what i love about this is the description of  what love is just keeps going – the writer almost can’t contain himself in terms of just trying to get across the message that this Love is so ridiculously huge – can’t even wrap your mind around it [imagine if all Jesus followers could wrap their minds around the unmindwrappability of the love of God?]

# to know this love that surpasses knowledge – it just keeps getting better – this love is beyond our capacity to understand and fathom it – that is insane and WHY DON’T YOU BELIEVE THAT? how small do we make the love and reach of God?

# that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God – be filled with all the fullness of God. again, this whole passage feels like something that could use long and hard meditation, because we [or christians in general] tend to live lives that are so small and certainly would not for the most part be described by outsiders as ‘all the fullness of God’ right? Maybe we should forget our focus on rules and who is in and who is out and just step back and be awestruck but this God we serve and what He freely offers us and who He calls us to be [and the fact that He does all the work of that – not our feeble efforts or strivings]

the best part is that was not the bit i wanted to focus on, but how incredible, right?

20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

Him [God] who is able to do IMMEASURABLY MORE than ALL WE COULD HOPE OR IMAGINE

What does that verse say to you? That maybe, just maybe, for the most part, we are hoping and imagining too small?

Because sometimes our prayers are so small [especially when they are me-focused] – God is wanting to end poverty and we are asking for a safe car journey. God is wanting to revolutionise your neighborhood and we are requesting more people in our sunday meeting? God is wanting to see His church in the marketplace and on the front lines connecting with and seeing life change in those who do not know Him… we pray for enough money to redo the church roof.

Immeasurably [which means can’t be counted, unable to be worked out or measured] more [as in not that much, but even more than that much] than all [as in everything, not just the easy ones or the things we can do in our own strength or as a community] we could hope or imagine [are some of us even hoping and imagining at all?]

Are you hoping and imagining big enough? Am i?

[For my next favourite verse, i look at Psalm 119 vs 105]

[For the growing list of all my favourite verses, click here]

listened to an ephesians 3 devotional by john piper who i have heard a lot about but have never heard or read any of his stuff before – really want to go back and watch that clip without sound because he looks a bit like a muppet on steroids – very energetic in movement

anyways i wasn’t overly inspired by most of what he said until right at the end when he basically said there are two tensions in the room and he is going to say something, that if people ‘get’ it or really embrace it, has the power to really change things or shake people up – so he built that up quite a bit and then went on to explain the two truths:

the first truth is that when the love of God takes root in us it sends us out to go and feed the hungry and clothe the naked and visit those in prison and take a stand against trafficking and get involved in the AIDS crisis and all other forms of practical involvement and justice seeking

the second truth is that when the love of God takes root in us it sends us out to save the lost with the power of the gospel message and what Jesus has achieved for us on our behalf

then he went on to say, “For Christ’s sake, can we Christians care about all suffering now, especially eternal suffering. Don’t choose between the two truths..”

[which is a valid statement as a lot of churches preach or live out ‘it’s all about the gospel of Jesus’ with no works of justice or service and the other extreme is all about doing works and justice with no Jesus and it really has to be a combination of both – the gospel is a message of hope both for now and for after we die]

and then went on to say “if either of these truths makes you angry or offends you, then either you have a defective view of hell, or you have a defective heart.”

i liked that.

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