Wednesday, January 28, 2015

NTDS (55): Hope, Riches and Power

Eph 1:18-19 I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. NIV

Hope, riches and power. Sounds like a mini-series, doesn’t it. Well, in a way it is. The apostle Paul, when he says, “eyes of your heart be enlightened,” simply means, “I want you to really see and understand!” What is it that Paul is deeming so important to understand?

There are three truths in these two verses, that He wants the Ephesians and us to take hold of. Understanding and accepting these three realities will bring an enormous depth to your relationship with Christ.

One: the hope of His calling: The word hope here is not used the way we usually think of hope but it means to anticipate or expect. What it really means, is that we await a promise, knowing that it will come to pass. What is this hope? It is the promise of eternal life with Jesus (Ro 1:6). It is the knowledge that we have victory over death (1 Co 15:55-56). As you contemplate that knowledge, it should relieve you from all fear in life. When you know the end of the story, you need not be afraid of what happens in the middle of it.

Two: the riches of His inheritance: Six times in Ephesians Paul will use the term “riches.” What are these riches? Just as a son or daughter might inherit money or property from a parent, we receive an inheritance from God (Ro 8:17). In this case however, Paul is saying that we are the inheritance! We are God’s glorious inheritance. Have you ever thought of yourself that way before? When you can grasp this, it should forever relieve you from thinking you have no worth. You are so valuable to God, that He calls you a glorious inheritance. What does it matter what man may think of you, when you know how God looks at you?

Three: His great power for us: How great is this power? Look at verses 19-21. “That power is like the working of his mighty strength, which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.”

His power, which is available to us so that we may live our lives for His glory, is greater than any other existing power. It is the ultimate power, beyond any comparison. Look at the verses again. You must understand that this is the power He gives to us! I know that many of you might be thinking that you do not ever see this power working in your lives, so you are not sure this is true. This is God’s word and God cannot lie. If you are not seeing this power in your life, you must go to Him and ask Him to show you why.

Let’s be clear on this. The power is available, but it according to God’s will and purpose. That is what Jesus meant when he used the term, “in my name.” (Jn 14:13,14, 26, and more) We know that it is God’s will for us to live our lives in obedience to Him, so when we ask for His power to do that, it will be granted. It’s possible that the reason we do not see it as often as we should, is because we do not ask or we ask with wrong motives (Ja 4:2-3). We should continually be asking the Lord for His power to live the life He has called us to live, and trust that He will provide that power!

Like Paul, I pray that by the power of the Holy Spirit, you will have the eyes of your heart enlightened to these truths, that you will receive them with joy, and that they will transform your lives. I pray that they will help you to walk closer with our Lord Jesus Christ than ever before!

God bless you

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