Ephesians 1:15-23

So for tonight’s study, we’ll be covering the first, of 3, prayers of Paul. 

1:15-16

So for what reason did Paul give thanks for the saints at Ephesus? 

He heard of their faith in Jesus and love to all saints. 

What do y’all think was the root of their love?

Their faith in Jesus, according to this verse. 

So their faith in Jesus caused these new(ish) converts to love all their kin. Why?

Because Jesus’ love overflowed out of them from Jesus once the saints understood all that God has done and is doing for them as Paul just set forth in our last study. From that understanding of Christ’s richness, the love of Christ overflowed to the rest of the saints. The gift of faith also gave them the gift of love. So we first love God then man. 

So help me apply this verse. what are some particle ways we can love each other (given that we’re all now saints)?

Notice the pattern set forth in this chapter also. Paul unloads an incredible treasury of theology on these saints and then begins to do what?

Pray for them. 

Talk to me for a minute about the Pharisees, who are they? What do y’all know about them?

Why were they so critical, so against Christ?

Because in their religious zealotry, in their quest for more theology, they forgot God. 

To anyone that says, “doctrine/theology doesn’t matter” point them to this chapter. Last week we barely scared the surface of what Paul said; continue to read, re-read and dig into every word of this chapter and watch as your heart grows in size for God. In the text/chapter/story always has a point and that point is always to point us back to God that is ultimately the point of any part of the bible. Let us indeed gain as much theology and doctrine as we can but let us not forgot to whom these things tell us to look toward and continue to cultivate faith and love. 

Ok, so, let us continue the idea of loving each other. 

What are some, general, things that each of us can be praying for the Cult? 

“give thanks” 

How do we become grateful? Or thankful for each other?

Recognize that these fellow saints are from God and are to be treated as such. 

1:17-19

1:17

Over the past year in particular, I’ve noticed a strange phenomenon in regards to prayer requests and maybe y’all notice this too; that we don’t pray like Paul did. Let\’s look at what Paul prays for his fellow saints.

There are 4 things Paul prays for. What are they?

Give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in knowledge of Him/eyes of heart enlightened 

  1. that you may know the hope He called us to

what are the riches of His glorious inheritance 

what is the power to us who believe according to His rich and great might. 

When was the last time y’all heard these things as a prayer request?

Why do you think we don’t ask these things as prayer requests (usually)?  

Let\’s go through these one at a time. 

“the Father of glory may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in knowledge of Him” 

First off, how many of you have your bibles say “Spirit” in them rather than “spirit”?

This is a hard text. Because Paul, I think, clearly uses the Greek word for Holy Spirit and not man’s spirit or soul. The problem is that he is writing to believers who, presumably, have been baptized and have the Spirit. So why would Paul pray for the Spirit when they have it? 

My answer to this is that Paul prays for a great outpouring, a greater manifestation/revealing of the Holy Spirit in their lives that will give them the wisdom and revelation so that they know God. 

And I think Paul is saying the same thing again in 1:18.

What do y’all think Paul means by “the eyes of your hearts” and, whatever that is, being “enlightened”?

“eyes of the heart” that is that their ability to see, or to know something. 

“enlightened” Literally ‘given light’ 

So Paul prays that they be able to see and then know the hope to which they’re called. 

What is that hope?

I think that hope is, as Paul will put forth, the hope that God will one day, through His great might, bring all of creation back to Himself where all things are back to the way they were in Genesis 2, where we walked, literally with God and enjoyed Him and His gifts to us.

Or perhaps, hope of eternal life. Hope of the universe being submitted to God and His kingdom like in Genesis 2. 

What’s the “riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints”?

I think it may be the saints themselves in their praising Him. His glorious inheritance is us, saints, and our praising of His glorious grace that He’s shown us. 

1:19-23

1:19

“immeasurable greatness of His power toward [us]”

How is this power manifested to us here and now?

By raising us from “deadness in the trespasses and sins” (2:1) We’ll expound more on that next week. But briefly, Paul introduces that resurrection power” idea in 1:20.

so the power that is at work in you, believer, is 

The same power He worked in Jesus when raising Him

the same power that He worked when He seated Him

the same power that He worked when He exalted Him v 20

the same power that He worked when He put all things under His feet

the same power that He worked when He made His Church the body of Him who fills all in all. 

Those are the 5 ways to measure the greatness of His power. 

The same power He worked in Jesus when raising Him. God raised Jesus from the dead never to die again. Death is defeated; that\’s the point there. Therefore, this thing that was once a poison is now a pathway to life eternal; you will not be outta fellowship with Jesus EVER. 

The resurrection of Jesus, from the dead and what became of Him afterward, shows the immeasurable greatness of God’s power toward those who believe. 

Why would God offer such power to us? 

To live a holy life. To be delivered from sin. To honor Him by His power through us. If you enjoy any deliverance from the power of the devil then you have this power within your life right now. You survive your battles because God is making you survive. He preserves us in our sleep surely He shall preserve us in battle. 

1:20-23

1:20

Paul will be expounding more on the resurrection in chapter 2. But for now let me ask this: 

What\’s it mean that God, by His might, seated Him at His right hand? 

Jesus is God’s, right-hand man. IE He holds the same power and position His father does. He helps Him rule the universe. 

the measure of His power to you now in this age is the same power that put the Devil under His feet. 

the same power that He worked when He made His Church the body of Him who fills all in all.  22

“all things” all of them; even today. Demons, destruction, history, sports, military might, religions, galaxies, atoms and sub atoms and 10,000 things man knows nothing about to Jesus. and He is given such an authority over the Church. That\’s the same thing he said in 1:19 He doesn’t give this same power to all but to those who believe.

Application: you have an enemy, a real enemy that hates you and your faith, your worship, family and family worship, relationships and ministry. If you want to know the power of 1:19 then wake up to the demonic battle that wages for your life and ministry. Sin is defeated at the cross and we war against it till last day. May God grant us the power that is available. By His blood, we will win, in the name of Jesus and the glory of His power. 

1:22-23

What\’s it mean that the Church is the body of Christ?

We are His representatives on Earth, we have a union/relationship with Him. 

1:23

I had a lot of trouble with this verse, what do y’all think this may mean? 

Maybe, Christ fills all of us, the Church with all of Him-His mercy, love, holiness, compassion, joy… 

#EphesiansBibleStudy

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