In Ephesians 1:15-20, Paul prays for believers in Ephesus to have a spiritual revelation of their position in Christ. The prayer is for us, too. It is a powerful prayer because Paul prays from the knowledge of who he is in Jesus Christ. Paul knows that the believers have no power without the spiritual wisdom God has given them. He doesn't plead with God to provide the Ephesians with spiritual insight. He prays for the Ephesians to open their spiritual eyes to what they have received.
“Ever since I first heard of your strong faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for God’s people everywhere, I have not stopped thanking God for you. I pray for you constantly, asking God, the glorious Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to give you spiritual wisdom and insight so that you might grow in your knowledge of God. I pray that your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can understand the confident hope he has given to those he called—his holy people who are his rich and glorious inheritance” (Ephesians 1:15-18, NLT).
Paul does not stop praising God for faithful believers and their love for each other. He prays that God would give them wisdom and revelation in their knowledge of Him. Paul wants them to understand what they have received in coming to know Christ. He knows that without growing in understanding their new identity, they have no power to stand against the enemy's lies and have confidence in God’s calling.
Have we grown in knowledge of who we are in Christ? Do we often plead with God to give us what we have already received because we don’t have the wisdom to know that it is already ours?
An example is 1 Peter 2:24, “He personally carried our sins in his body on the cross so that we can be dead to sin and live for what is right. By his wounds you are healed” (NLT). This verse clearly states the results of what Christ has done. Because He died, we are dead to sin, and by His wounds, we are healed. Do we have the spiritual wisdom to understand that He has saved us and also healed us? When we grasp this Truth, our perspective changes. The way we pray for healing changes. When we realize Jesus took our infirmities into His own body on the Cross, we don't plead with God to heal us. Jesus already carried in His tortured body the pain of our sickness and healed us. We pray, thanking Him for healing. We praise Him, believing in our mind that one day we shall experience in our body the Truth of His Word.
“I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 1:19-20, NKJV).
Paul prays for us to understand the power we have when we believe God. It is the same power that raised Jesus from the dead. Do we understand that His Resurrection power lives in us? We don’t plead with God from weakness. When we have the spiritual wisdom of who we are in Jesus Christ, we pray from strength. We know that in our weakness, He is strong. And that His strength and power are ours. When we pray, if we believe that we've already received what we ask, it will be ours (Mark 11:24).
Do you believe in what you have received? You have blessed assurance! You have received Jesus! Know who you are. Know what is yours in Christ. Open the Word. His Word is life. Allow the Holy Spirit to teach you what you have received in Christ. Ask God for wisdom. He gives it generously (James 1:5).
©2020 Lynn Lacher