Unity was a primary goal. As the Apostle Paul wrote to the Ephesian church one major concern on his mind was that the church exist in unity. Consider the situation. God had done a powerful work in Ephesus through the preaching of the gospel. Widespread repentance of sin had occurred as recorded in Acts 19. The result of people turning to Christ was that a church was born and now both Jew and Gentile worshiped together. That was a new amazing reality. Why?
Jews considered Gentiles to be pagan, spiritual outcasts. Gentiles were separated from God, were not partakers of His promises and had no hope (Ephesians 2:11-12). But now, through Christ’s mediating work, both Jew and Gentile who had repented of sin and exercised faith in Christ were now spiritual equals and united in the body of Christ, the church. How would they experience this new unity? How would it be a reality?
Paul knew that believers in the Ephesian church had no power in and of themselves to live lives that created unity in the church. So what did Paul do? He sought divine power on behalf of the Ephesian believers to empower their spiritual walk enabling them to live in unity.
There is a key lesson here for all believers. Every believer can access the power of God to gain spiritual strength to live the Christian life for God’s glory and for his or her own spiritual maturity. In Ephesians 3:14-21, we discover “5″ keys to accessing the power of God. The first key is magnify God in prayer. The first key to access the very power of God in your life is to magnify God in prayer.
Magnify God through a humble heart.
Do you want to gain and experience the very power of God? It begins with prayer; and, prayer that focuses on magnifying God. How do I pray in such a way as to magnify God? First, you come before him with a humble heart. Humility accesses power because it acknowledges a need. Believers first must acknowledge their inadequacy and we do that by coming before God in prayer. The very act of prayer humbles our heart and seeks to put God first in our life. This is how Paul responded on behalf of the Ephesians, he sought to magnify God in humble prayer. Paul said, “For this reason I bow my knees before the Father.” That should be our heart attitude in prayer if we desire God to empower our spiritual life.
Magnify God through exalting His sovereignty.
Second, we magnify God by exalting His sovereign authority. This is how Paul prayed in Ephesians 3:14-15. He refers to God as the “Father” of all created beings! That is a powerful way to magnify God! In our prayers we should pray exalting God by confessing back to Him His divine attributes that confirm to our hearts His sovereignty. Exalting the very sovereign nature of God opens our heart and mind to confirm and believe in His power and its appropriation to our lives.
This is the first key to accessing God’s power to enable your spiritual life. You must seek to magnify God in prayer. You do that by coming before Him with a humble attitude and by confessing to Him His own sovereign nature. As you practice this key, you will begin to experience the spiritual transformation and strengthening that comes when we lower self and magnify God.
How do I practically implement this key into my spiritual life?
1) Pray. To turn this key you must begin to pray. And we learn here that we must pray with a humble attitude and our prayers must be filled with the magnification of God.
2) Be disciplined. To appropriate the power of God in your life through prayer you must pray on a consistent basis. A daily disciplined pattern of prayer is a must. As food sustains the physical body, prayer will sustain God’s power in our spiritual life.
3) Meditate on the Psalms. To properly magnify God we must be reading and meditating on Scripture and develop a list of God’s attributes that connect to His sovereignty. Daily meditation in the psalms will expose these attributes to your mind and inform your prayers.
4) Develop a dependent mindset. As believers we must continually battle the flesh and its desire to be “self-sufficient.” To combat the flesh and remain in a state of humble dependence we must “preach the gospel” to ourselves daily. A daily reminder of God’s grace to us in the gospel will assist us in maintaining a dependent mind-set. Find a gospel saturated passage of Scripture and make it your daily meditation.
I hope that as you implement these principles and practical steps into your Christian walk you will begin to experience God’s power to enable your spiritual life.
Posted on:January 10, 2012