Letter to the Ephesians

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Today we come to the end of the first part of the letter to the Ephesians which addresses the nature of church. This first part looks at the identity we have in Christ. We need to know who we are in Christ before we can truly live it out in our lives. Underlying this theme are several other themes one of which is that of the power we have in Christ. Power has been mentioned explicitly and implicitly in these opening three chapters as it describes what we have through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Now this theme comes to a head as Paul sums up our identity and what it means for the church.

Today’s reading is a prayer Paul prays for the Ephesians. He prays several petitions and the reasons for praying them. He prays that we may be strengthened with power through the Holy Spirit so that Christ will dwell in
our hearts. He prays that we may know the power to grasp the width, length, height and depth of Christ’s love for us so that we may be filled with the fullness of God. These lead to the power we have to bring glory to God through the church and in Christ Jesus. This passage reaches a great climax
as Paul seeks to help us understand the power we have been given by God in Christ through the Holy Spirit.

I often wonder if we, and I, fully understand or appreciate the power we can have in Christ. We all desire a strong vibrant church; a church that witnesses strongly to the richness that believers have in Christ. We can be
part of such a church as we understand who we are in Christ and appropriate the power we have in bim. This prayer tells us that we can have it all; the knowledge and the experience of a vibrant faith that as we grasp this truth
we can as individuals and the church bring and give true glory to God.

Next week we begin the second part of this letter that outlines the practical implications of what it means to be in Christ.

Tony Wicking

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