TRUTH: Know God II


When an author really wants people to know something, they use more colorful and descriptive language that paints a more defined picture of the desired reality that the author wants the reader to have. Because this is a function of language and how the human brain works, we see literary elements used in a variety of writings. This is true of the Word of God too. Today, we look at the Apostle Paul uses of allusion, imagery, paired, adjectives, personification and foreshadowing. What was Paul’s purpose? He wanted the Ephesians, and God us, to see the TRUTH: Know God II.

The Apostle Paul was praying that for those believers in Ephesus. We see that in Ephesians 1.

15 For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, 16 I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. 17 I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms,

In verses 15-17, Paul is saying that we must grow in our knowledge by having wisdom that is knowing what is right and doing what is right. Paul also attributes that knowing to the Spirit. He prays that the Spirit may reveal or give a revelation of who God is.

Now in verses 18-20, Paul is telling the TRUTH: Know God II. This is the second dimension of knowing God. First, Paul asks God to give the Ephesians the Holy Spirit, so He could give them wisdom and revelation to Know God better. Like an onion, we must peel the layers back to Know God II. Paul is expressing to them that there is a spiritual dimension through which they must see life. Like Neo in the Matrix, we must see beyond the natural confines of our mind. We must operation in the spiritual. We do so by seeing which is why Paul prays for the Ephesians.

Let’s peer into what Paul prays for the Ephesians to grow in their knowledge of God.

  1. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you.
  2. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in or that you may know the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people.
  3. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in or that you may know his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms. 

In regards to hope, Paul uses a metaphor to ask God. He prays that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened. In this case along with others, metaphors are used to denote mental vision. To be enlightened means that more light is given to perceive. It is akin to when I woke up this morning. I had to use my cell phone to give me more light to find my way. Greater light is equated to greater understanding/knowledge. Regardless, the focus or the thing Paul wants them to Know God II is hope to which the believer has been called. Hope (  ) is defined as the expectation of good, hope; in the Christian sense it is the joyful and confident expectation of eternal salvation. Furthermore, it is the hope of God’s presence, promises and power in your life in the here and now. It is that hope in God’s presence, promises and power that would aid us in our hardships, sufferings or trials. Whether hope in the here and now or for salvation at the coming of Christ, Paul wants the Ephesians and us to grow in our knowledge of the hope to which we were called. If you were called to it, you have not only have an expectation of God but a right to it extended by God. This notion has a capstone in found in Romans 8:28-29 which says, “28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.”

What does Paul mean when he prays “that you may know the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people.” The calling refers to salvation and its benefits. One is the glorious inheritance. Riches refer to the abundance of something. Here it not just an inheritance; it is a glorious inheritance. That adjective assigns godly attributes to the inheritance believers receive. It is a direct link to what Paul says in verse 8 of the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us. It is God’s grace that makes the inheritance of salvation available. Paul uses the notion of inheritance to capture the mind of the Ephesians. An inheritance is left for the benefit of an offspring, child or descendant. Paul wants them to know that they have a glorious inheritance in them first starting with being in the family of God proved by the indwelling Holy Spirit, then for them to remember that they have access to every spiritual blessing as stated in verse three of Ephesians 1. To reiterate, the presence, promise and power of God in the here and now is perhaps it. I tend to think though it is the Spirit Himself as Paul says “inheritance in his holy people.” Remember verse 14, the Holy Spirit is “is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.” TRUTH: Know God II

I don’t even feel right trying to address all of these blessings especially his incomparably great power for us who believe. Nevertheless, I will say this. Paul says God’s power is incomparable; yet, he draws a comparison to give us greater sight or understanding of the power that is available to us as God works His plan in our lives. The comparison is that it is the same power that raised Jesus from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms. I don’t even know what that means, BUT I know it is big because Jesus went from being a curse, accepting the penalty of our sin on the cross, to being in the place of honor and power – seated at the right hand of God. Again, there is too much. It is a power that we have seen but is incomparable. We see it but don’t understand it which is Paul’s point of the prayer – that they would understand the power available to them. TRUTH: Know God II.  Ponder those things. 

Paul’s pray for them to Know God reminds me of a song by Trip Lee title Know Me.

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