Sunday, February 17, 2008

Paul's Summary of His Mission

Paul’s Work in Telling the Good News

Ephesians 3

1So I, Paul, am a prisoner of Christ Jesus for you who are not Jews. 2Surely
you have heard that God gave me this work through his grace to help you. 3He let
me know his secret by showing it to me. I have already written a little about this.
4If you read what I wrote then, you can see that I truly understand the secret
about the Christ. 5People who lived in other times were not told that secret. But
now, through the Spirit, God has shown that secret to his holy apostles and
prophets. 6This is that secret: that through the Good News those who are not Jews
will share with the Jews in God’s blessing. They belong to the same body, and
they share together in the promise that God made in Christ Jesus.

7By God’s special gift of grace given to me through his power, I became a
servant to tell that Good News. 8I am the least important of all God’s people, but
God gave me this gift—to tell those who are not Jews the Good News about the
riches of Christ, which are too great to understand fully. 9And God gave me the
work of telling all people about the plan for his secret, which has been hidden in
him since the beginning of time. He is the One who created everything. 10His
purpose was that through the church all the rulers and powers in the heavenly
world will now know God’s wisdom, which has so many forms. 11This agrees
with the purpose God had since the beginning of time, and he carried out his plan
through Christ Jesus our Lord. 12In Christ we can come before God with freedom
and without fear. We can do this through faith in Christ. 13So I ask you not to
become discouraged because of the sufferings I am having for you. My sufferings
are for your glory.

The Love of Christ

14So I bow in prayer before the Father 15from whom every family in heaven
and on earth gets its true name. 16I ask the Father in his great glory to give you
the power to be strong inwardly through his Spirit. 17I pray that Christ will live in
your hearts by faith and that your life will be strong in love and be built on love.
18And I pray that you and all God’s holy people will have the power to
understand the greatness of Christ’s love—how wide and how long and how high
and how deep that love is. 19Christ’s love is greater than anyone can ever know,
but I pray that you will be able to know that love. Then you can be filled with the
fullness of God.

20With God’s power working in us, God can do much, much more than
anything we can ask or imagine. 21To him be glory in the church and in Christ
Jesus for all time, forever and ever. Amen.

The Holy Bible, New Century Version


Paul told the Ephesians his goals for them. He shared his prayer for their growth in insight and strength.


Although God's love for us cannot be measured by any comprehensible standards, God wants us to know this ocean of love.


The promises of God's love and forgiveness are as real, as sure, as positive as human words can make them. But like describing the ocean, its total beauty cannot be understood until it is actually seen. It is the same with God's love. Until you actually accept it, until you actually experience it, until you actually possess true peace with God, no one can describe its wonders to you.

It is not something that you can do with your mind. Your finite mind is not capable of dealing with anything as great as the love of God. Your mind might have difficulty explaining how a black cow can eat green grass and give white milk-but you drink the milk and are nourished by it. Your mind can't reason through all the intricate processes that take place when you plant a small flat seed that produces a huge vine bearing luscious red and green watermelons but you eat them and enjoy them! You can't understand radio, but you listen. Your mind can't explain the electricity that may be creating the light by which you are reading at this very moment-but you know that it's there and that it is making it possible for you to read! (From Peace with God by Billy Graham)


Learn to see God's love for you in the details of daily life. Read 1 John and get a firmer grasp on understanding God's love.


God's Love -- Psalm 6:4; John 3:16; 15:12; Romans 5:8; 8:35-37; 1 John 3:1.

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