Ephesians– overview of 3:1-9; tapping into the power of God, part 11.
Wednesday November 6, 2019
Col 1:9 For this reason also, since the day we heard of it, we have not ceased to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding,
Col 1:10 so that you may walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God;
Col 1:11 strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience; joyously
Col 1:12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.
Paul prays that we would know the surpassing greatness of God’s power toward us who believe.
The scripture reveals that the Son of God relied upon the power of God the Holy Spirit throughout His first advent.
He grew in wisdom and knowledge, He obeyed all the Father’s will, and He was empowered to complete fully every aspect of the mission for which He was sent to earth.
Jesus said to His disciples when He first came to them after His resurrection that “as the Father has sent Me, I also send you.” And then He breathed on them the Holy Spirit. It is significant that the same Greek verb “breathed on” is used in the Septuagint in Gen 2:7 when God breathed life into Adam, and in Eze 37:5 where God breathes upon dead bones and they come to life.
The Christian life cannot be satisfied by the merely ethical, though it is divinely ethical. Relationship to Christ in love and faith in the mystical power of the HS within is also required.
Immediately after His resurrection, Jesus brings to fruition that which He promised, that the Holy Spirit would be the source of our life lived unto God as His children. All the good that we do and all of God’s will that we do are all empowered and made possible by the Holy Spirit within us. Since our old man is dead, making our return to him impossible, the new life is our only option and so we cannot have life apart from the Holy Spirit’s functioning within us.
Also, there is a grand reason for the life that the believer possesses, a grand purpose, which must be known. We do not do and live for the sake, say, being better, being behaved, but for Christ’s sake. The life of God has been brought to earth in the Person of Christ and He died to give it to men. God’s life is pure joy and meaning; goodness and light; power and love; it is pure glory that words fail to fully describe. God’s life, its very existence, proves the unbelieving opposition to be totally on the wrong side of light – darkness. Even if no one were to witness it, there is a grand purpose in living God’s life. It includes morals, ethics, goodness, as well as supernatural power, purpose, will, spirit, love, thought, etc., etc. So much does it have that it is as impossible to come up with a comprehensive definition of it as it is to comprehensively define God. But we don’t wait for definitions before we live. We just life. That is freedom.
Power is by the Spirit, but we have to participate in its use by obedience to truth through faith.
We cannot use our own efforts. But how do we know we are using our own efforts?
Human power, which is minus God’s power, inevitably has self as its ultimate goal, and so results in sin.
One cannot do the will of God without God’s power. Obey His will in all things and you will be empowered by God.
Hence, God has made it quite simple for us. Though we may struggle with obeying God’s commands, obedience is simple in concept. Obedience also implies understanding. When you command someone to obey, they immediately think, “Obey what and why?” Obedience to God’s way and goodness implies and demands wisdom and faith. Obedience without knowledge of God and the God/Man will not find fulfilment or accomplishment. Also, obedience without love will not long survive. Fortunately, knowledge of the person and mind of Christ always leads to love of Christ and His ways.
Watch Paul’s use of power in 2Co 4. It is his faith and his faith’s proclivity to doing God’s will where he finds power.
2Co 3:17 Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
Liberty is the birthright of the child of God. It is the freedom to be good and do good without following laws, meaning, without just going through the motions. Bad people can keep laws, therefore keeping laws is something that the flesh can do, but living free to do good in anything that comes your way, even the most unexpected thing, is the life of the mature child of God, which we all are to be.
For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh [to work under law], but through love serve one another.
Christian liberty is more than doing something or not doing something, but knowing goodness and life and living that in all things we find ourselves in. It is not doing a particular thing procedurally, but doing everything, which in each life is unique, in pure goodness.