“For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him.”
Paul’s prayer – his petition – is directed to “the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory.” This is the Apostle Paul praying to the Creator God of the universe on our behalf. Powerful!
The focus of Paul’s prayer is that God would give us “a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him.” Paul’s petition is that we will comprehend and appreciate our identity in Christ.
The key to this deep level of understanding is “a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him.” The apostle prays for a level of wisdom and understanding that happens when we deeply know God. It is not about head knowledge; it is about heart knowledge. It is much more than knowing things about God; it is knowing God himself.
Paul wants to spare us from frantically searching for our identity. He wants us to know who we are and what is already ours in Christ. He asks the Lord to open the eyes of our hearts that we might see and understand the hope, riches, and power that we have by virtue of our relationship with Christ.
Paul continues his prayer: “… having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power in us who believe.” (Ephesians 1.18-19)
It is not a general prayer, such as “Lord please bless the Ephesians.” No, his prayer is focused like a laser. He prays quite specifically that the Lord would enlighten the hearts of the believers in Asia Minor and Ephesus (and us) so that they (and we) would comprehend and act upon the realities of life in Christ.
Every person wants hope, riches, and power. It is a human need. No one wants to feel hopeless, poor, and powerless. And yet that is the human condition apart from Christ. Sadly, many people seek to find hope, riches, and power in the wrong places and thereby fall prey to the distortions and seductions of the world.
Jesus liberates us from the distortions and seductions of the world. He gives us true hope, eternal riches, and life-changing power for living the life to which he calls us.