Sunday 30 May, 2021

Ephesians 1:15-23

15 For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, 16 I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. 17 I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit[a] of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18 I pray 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 his holy people, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.

What is my hope? What do I count as my inheritance? Where does my strength come from?

All these questions spring to mind from Paul’s prayer for the believers in Ephesus. His prayer focuses my attention on the fundamentals of faith – hope, our future with God, and the power of God for us.

“Hope” –  this word conveys so many things. Our hope of glory (Colossians 1 v 27, a living hope (1 Peter 1 v 3), a transforming hope (1 John 3 v 2-3). As Ps Phil Pringle has written “Hope is a person, Jesus Christ.” Through Jesus we can hope for a glorious life forever with God. We can have hope for our lives now, when things are tough or seem hopeless because Jesus is our hope, our assurance of God’s love and plan for each of us – that plan is to be transformed to be more like Christ.

Why does Paul pray for them to know the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people? I think he wants them to have a future or heavenly perspective of life. The Message version captures it well “I ask…that you …grasp the immensity of the glorious way of life he has for his followers.” “The glorious way of life” is living with the Lord, not as if he doesn’t exist. We grow in relationship with him as we trust him every day, and we also look forward to a glorious never ending life with God, which is our inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade – 1 Peter 1 v 4.

As Paul prays this for the believers, I feel the challenge is for us to be praying this for each other. That we grow deeper into the living hope and that we live in the glorious way of life he has designed for us.

Dear Lord Jesus, open the eyes of my heart so my perspective remains with you in the centre of everything.  Amen

Written by Claire Moore

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