Listen to sermons at FreeGraceRadio.com
Sermon #17 — Ephesians Sermons
Title: My Prayer for You
Text: Ephesians 1:15-23
Subject: Paul’s Prayer for God’s People
Date: Sunday Evening — July 19, 2015
If you will open your Bible with me to Ephesians 1, verses 15-23, you will find My Prayer for You. That is the title of my message. — My Prayer for You — (Ephesians 1:15-23).
Proposition: That which Paul sought for these saints at Ephesus, I seek for you. This is my prayer to God for you.
(Ephesians 1:15-23) Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints, (16) Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers; (17) That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: (18) The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, (19) And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power, (20) Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, (21) Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: (22) And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, (23) Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.
Divisions: Let me call your attention to four things in this message.
Grace Inspiring Prayer
First, in verses 15-16, the Apostle speaks of the grace of God upon these saints which inspired his prayers to God for them. He speaks of Grace Inspiring Prayer. Grace manifest in God’s people inspires them to pray for one another.
(Ephesians 1:15-16) Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints, (16) Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers.
“Wherefore” — Because of all that God has done for you in Christ (Ephesians 1:3-14), I cannot refrain from seeking more grace for you at the Throne of Grace.
All these things Paul knew to be the possession of all the saints; and he knew that these Ephesians were saints because he had heard of…
These two things always go hand in hand: Faith and Love.
All saints love all saints, not because they particularly like each other. There are a lot more saints I don’t know than there are that I know; but I love them all. — I am devoted to the comfort, edification, defense, and welfare of them all, because they are saints, because they are Christ’s (Philippians 2:1-5; 1 Corinthians 13).
(Philippians 2:1-8) If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, (2) Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. (3) Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. (4) Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. (5) Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: (6) Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: (7) But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: (8) And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
(1 Corinthians 13:1-13) Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. (2) And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. (3) And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing. (4) Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, (5) Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; (6) Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; (7) Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. (8) Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. (9) For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. (10) But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. (11) When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. (12) For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. (13) And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.
The Father of Glory
Now, second, look at the first part of the next verse, and see how God the Holy Ghost inspired the Apostle Paul to speak of the God to whom we pray. This is the God before whose throne I carry your name. — He is “the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of Glory” (v. 17)
He who is our God, the God of all grace, is the God of our Lord Jesus Christ.
He is the God our Savior served for us, the God of the God-man who redeemed us with his own precious blood.
And this great God, the God of all grace, is — “The Father of Glory.” What a great name for our God — “The Father of Glory!” He is the glorious Father. He is glorious in himself, glorious in the perfections of his nature, and glorious in the works of his hands.
As Christ’s Father, as the God and Father of the Godman our Savior, he is a glorious Father.
And, oh, what a glorious father to us! To us he has shown and ever shows indescribable, everlasting mercy, love, and grace!
He who is our God is called the Father of Glory because he is the Author and Giver of all grace and glory to his elect!
My Desires for You
Now, third, in verses 17-19, you have my desires for you. These are the things I incessantly pray that God will give you. These are the things for which I labor night and day in the Gospel for your souls.
(Ephesians 1:17-19) That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: (18) The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, (19) And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,
(Philippians 3:1-11) Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not grievous, but for you it is safe. (2) Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision. (3) For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh. (4) Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more: (5) Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; (6) Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless. (7) But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. (8) Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, (9) And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: (10) That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; (11) If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.
The Glory of Christ
Fourth, in verses 20-23, we see that all these things are intimately connected with the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
(Ephesians 1:20-23) Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, (21) Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: (22) And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, (23) Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.