Paul’s Prayer for Spiritual Power
Paul is a man of prayer. This is Paul’s second prayer in this beautiful Epistle. There were so many
instances in the Scriptures where he sincerely prayed for believers, sometimes specifically, other
times generally. I must emphasize to you that his prayers in the church as a whole is more on
spiritual needs rather than material. He was not praying for health, wealth, and prosperity. He was
not praying for the removal of pain and sufferings, not even spiritual experience which are so
popular today in modern churches. Below are his gracious petitions as he earnestly prayed.
I. Spiritual blessings he asked from the Lord:
A. Spiritual Power – Eph. 3: 16 …“strengthened with might by his spirit in the inner
man. The strength and power of the Holy Spirit working in the hearts of every
believer in the church is of great importance to our present time. This spiritual
power is needed because:
1. It is mightier than physical forces – Zechariah 4:6 Then he answered and spake
unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by
might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.
2. It gives men courage to rebuke sin – Micah 3:8 But truly I am full of power by
the spirit of the LORD, and of judgment, and of might, to declare unto Jacob his
transgression, and to Israel his sin.
3. It enables men to speak with authority – Acts 4:33 And with great power gave
the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was
upon them all.
4. Christ Himself is the best example – Luke 4:14 And Jesus returned in the power
of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of him through all the
region round about.
An astonishing 20,000 Canadians declared themselves to be followers of the religion of Jedi, the
guardians of peace and justice in the Star Wars flicks, Statistics Canada reported in the latest, and
final, data to come from the 2001 census.
Derek Evans is the director of the Naramata Centre just north of Penticton, B.C., which is affiliated
with the United Church of Canada. He understands why young people may be drawn to the Force.
“It’s part of a journey of a young man discovering the powers that rest within himself and how he
can access it for his own strength and nurture, or of the people he cares about, through focusing his
intentions on good,” said Evans.
“I think that’s what most great religious traditions teach us.”
Actually, the Gospel is the exact opposite: Jesus Christ came and lived, died and rose not because we
have inner power, but because we have absolutely no power. We are powerless to overcome sin or
to change ourselves; powerless to love; powerless to believe; powerless to change our guilty
standing before God. The power one receives when he becomes a Christian is not his own, but that
of the Spirit of Christ.
B. Indwelling Presence of Christ- Eph. 3:17 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by
faith: The general rule for me is, no Christ no spiritual power. To have Christ is to
have spiritual power. The word “dwell” means “to make His home with”. Paul is
asking Christ to make our hearts His home.
1. This can be obtained by faith – Ephesians 3:17 That Christ may dwell in your
hearts by faith;
2. If Christ dwells in you, you are a new man with new life – Galatians 2:20 I am
crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and
the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who
loved me, and gave himself for me.
3. Christ can dwell to all – Revelation 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if
any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup
with him, and he with me.
4. Obedience is necessary – 1 John 3:24 And he that keepeth his commandments
dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by
the Spirit which he hath given us.
C. Stability of Character – Eph. 3:17b – being rooted and grounded in love. The
meaning of this is, that his love should be as firm in our hearts as a tree is in the soil,
whose roots strike deep into the earth. I would explain this as being established on
the strong foundation in serving God and serving other people whether they are
believers or not. We must give unconditional love for others, no favouritism, no
racism, etc. By this people will know that we really are Christ’s disciples.
D. Wider comprehension of Christ’s love – Eph. 3:18 – May be able to comprehend
with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height – a believer
cannot fully understand the greatness and fulness of God’s love to all men apart
from the real Spirit empowered love in his life. God is love and He commanded us to
love one another. The term breadth, length, depth, and height, are words to
describe the limitlessness, immeasurable, never ending love of Christ for all of us.
Christ’s love for us as presented in the Bible is:
1. Unchangeable – Jn. 13:1
2. Divine – Jn. 15:9
3. Self – sacrificing – Jn. 15:13
4. Inseparable – Rom. 8:35
5. Constraining – 2 Cor. 5:14
6. Sacrificial – Gal. 2:20
7. Manifested by His death – 1 Jn. 3:16
Illustration: Unconditional Love
There is nothing you can to do make God love you more!
There is nothing you can do to make God love you less!
His love is Unconditional, Impartial, Everlasting, Infinite, Perfect! (Richard C. Halverson)
E. Spiritual Fullness – Eph. 3:19 – that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.
Filled out of this fathomless fulness of God. “That ye might be complete in
accordance with God’s own standard of completeness (Weymouth). Already “from
His fulness have all we received, and grace upon grace” (John 1. 16). But, Lord,
increase our faith, that we may rise to the Divine standard of fulness.
II. His benediction of praise or his Doxology – Ephesians 3:20 Now unto him that is able to
do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that
worketh in us,
A. His benediction is God centered. It is pointed to God alone. Giving praise to Him
from whom all blessings come, and to whom all thanks are due.
B. Exceeding abundantly. God is able to do all things to an extent which we cannot
C. Above all that we ask or think. More than all that we can desire in our prayers; more
than all that we can ask or imagine. More than our finite mind can think of.
D. According to the power that worketh in us. All that he can do, and all that he has
promised to do, will be done according to what he has done, by that power of the
holy Ghost, which worketh strongly in us.
This is an earnest prayer for the brethren in Ephesus and to the whole church as a
whole. Do you pray for your church, for your Pastor, Sunday School Teachers, Deacons,
fathers and mothers, and everyone in your church? If not, why don’t you start now?