I encourage you to let the Body of Christ grow in God’s strength
In Ephesians 3:14-16 we find the apostle Paul praying for the strength of the church. Two thousand years later, few believers would deny their need for spiritual strengthening. So, we’re going to look at Paul’s specific requests, acknowledging they are as relevant today as they were then.
God’s mercy provides all that’s needed for His children “according to the riches of his glory” (Eph 3:16a). The Lord doesn’t hand out left-overs, nor does He give second-hand gifts. No, He provides the very best Heaven has to offer; and what He gives is a reflection of the infinite wealth of His own holy majesty and power, “His glory.”
Therefore Paul was requesting the very best God had to offer the Christians in Ephesus. He wanted the Lord to grant them “to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being” (Eph 3:16b). Paul’s not asking God to simply help them. He’s not asking for external assistance, nor is he asking for a top-up of energy to get them through the day. No, Paul’s asking God to engage His Holy Spirit in energising their entire inner person; spiritually, emotionally, and physically, with the required measure of divine resources needed in each individual.
A big request for a big God
This was no small proposal. In order “that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith” (Eph 3:17a), Holy Spirit intervention is needed. Therefore, Paul wanted the Lord’s will to win the day (Eph 1:11) through Christ’s Lordship over the believer’s entire inner being through the mechanism of faith. As we know from Ephesians 2:8-9, faith is gifted from God due to mankind’s inability to possess it. This faith is a deep belief which is so convinced of God that dependant trust in Christ as Lord and Saviour is the only appropriate expression of that faith. That’s precisely what Paul wanted for believers.
Consequently, by God’s design, the body of Christ is to be “rooted and grounded in love” (Eph 3:17b). Authentic Holy Spirit generated love (Rom 5:5) is healthy, enabling others to “know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:35). Likewise, deep selfless love affirms a believer’s authenticity. Jesus says “If you love me, you will keep my commandments” (John 14:15). “Grounded in love” is obvious because it’s marked by obedience to Christ.
Christians need heavenly “strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge” (Eph 3:17b-19a). Make no mistake; God’s children are dependant upon the Holy Spirit’s inner strength if they are to mature to a truly deep realisation of Christ and His love.
Divine strength – not fantasy
Now, all this may sound somewhat fanciful, yet the apostle Paul and God are quite serious. Both desire “that you may be filled with all the fullness of God” (Eph 3:19b). Enabling intimacy with God to grow to saturation with His character is paramount. This is God’s will for your life, and in order to accomplish His will, the Lord graciously grants the required strength.
Be encouraged Christian friend; “We all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit” (2 Corinthians 3:18).
I encourage you to let the Body of Christ grow in God’s strength. Share these truths with another believer so they too may be built up in their faith, for God’s glory, their blessing, and your joy.
Together for Christ: Lincoln Forlong www.baybiblefellowship.co.nz