Ephesians Chapter Three

The apostle Paul reveals to us, who he is in his new creation, and shows us
that we should recognize ourselves as slaves for the kingdom of God
(Ephesians 3:1-2) “for this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you
Gentiles.  If you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is
given me to you-ward”.

This is explained to us a little clearer in (Romans 6:16-22) which says “know
you not, that to whom you yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants you
are to whom you obey; whether of sin to death, or of obedience to
righteousness?  But God be thanked, that you were the servants of sin, but
you have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered
you.  Being then made free from sin, you became the servants of
righteousness.  I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of
your flesh; for as you have yielded your members servants to uncleanness
and to iniquity to iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to
righteousness to holiness. For when you were the servants of sin, you were
free from righteousness.  What fruit had you then in those things whereof you
are now ashamed?  For the end of those things are death.  But now being
made free from sin, and become servants to God, you have your fruit to
holiness, and the end everlasting life”.

The apostle Paul was sent to reveal the previous hidden mystery to us
(Ephesians 3:3-6) “how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery;
as I wrote afore in few words.  Whereby, when you read, you may understand
my knowledge in the mystery of Christ.  Which in other ages was not made
known to the sons of men, as it is now revealed to His holy apostles and
prophets by the Spirit.  That the Gentiles should be fellow heirs and of the
same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ by the gospel”.

Galatians 3:29 says “and if you be Christ’s, then are you Abraham’s seed, and
heirs according to the promise”.

Paul goes on explaining how God was able to use him after surrendering on
the road to Damascus as he met Jesus (Acts 9:1-6) “and Saul, yet breathing
out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went to the
high priest.  And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if
he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring
them bound to Jerusalem.  And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus;
and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven.  And he fell to
the earth, and hears a voice saying to him, Saul, Saul, why persecute you
Me?  And he said, who are You, Lord?  And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom
you persecute, it is hard for you to kick against the pricks.  And he trembling
and astonished said, Lord, what will You have me to do?  And the Lord  said to
him, arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told you what you must do”.

This should give us hope that when we surrender to the Lord, we too can be
used of God.

It’s by grace that God uses us (Ephesians 3:7-11) “whereof I was made a
minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given to me by the effectual
working of His power.  To me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this
grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the un-searchable riches
of Christ.  And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which
from the beginning of the world has been hid in God, who created all things by
Jesus Christ.  To the intent that now to the principalities and powers in
heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God.  
According to the eternal purpose which He purposed in Christ Jesus our
Lord”.  We have to remember that Christ was crucified from the foundation of
the world.

We find out that in Christ, we become bold.  In fact as you read through Paul’s
letters every time you see, in whom, in Him, and in Christ, scripture is revealing
what we become (Ephesians 3:12) “in whom we have boldness and access
with confidence by faith of Him”.

We are not to faint in hard times, but we are to minister to those which God
has set before us and pray for them to be strengthened in the Lord.  
Remember that we have the Holy Spirit living within us.  These types of
prayers will enhance the body of Christ (Ephesians 3:13-19) “wherefore I
desire that you faint not at my tribulations for you, which is your glory.  For this
cause I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Of whom the
whole family in heaven and earth is named.  That He would grant you,
according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might by His Spirit
in the inner man.  That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that you being
rooted and grounded in love.  May be able to comprehend with all saints what
is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height.  And to know the love of
Christ, which passes knowledge, that you might be filled with all the fullness of
God”.

Our power comes by the word of God that is in our hearts; and Ephesians 3:20
says “now to Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask
or think, according to the power that works in us”.  We have to make a demand
on God by what we ask Him for, and by what we think about; and Philippians 4:
6-9 tells us what we should think on.  It says “be careful (anxious) for nothing,
but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request
be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which passes all
understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.  
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest,
whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are
lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there
be any praise, think on these things.  Those things which you have both
learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do; and the God of peace
shall be with you”.

Jesus taught us to ask (Matthew 7:7-11) “ask, and it shall be given you; seek,
and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you.  For every one that
asks receives, and he that seeks finds; and to him that knocks it shall be
opened.  Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give
him a stone?  And if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?  If you then,
being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall
your Father, which is in heaven give you good things to them that ask Him?”

The apostle James says “you have not, because you ask not” (James 4:2c).

We need to acknowledge that God deserves all the glory (Ephesians 3:21) “to
Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without
end, Amen”.

Study by:  Harriet Bond
Date: June 4, 2013
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