Paul's Prayer (part 3)
"...that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God."
The Greek word translated "filled" literally means "crammed", in other words, "packed completely full". "Fulness" is another form of the same Greek word. These words are from the same word translated "full" in the following verse which speaks of the selection of the first deacons:
“Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business.” (Acts 6:3)
So we see that it is possible in this life to be "filled with all the fulness of God". If we go back into the previous portion of verse 19, we see that this filling is dependent upon knowing "the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge".
"Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think,..."
Let us dwell on these words for awhile. They are telling us:
1. God can do "above what we ask". You see God is not limited by what we ask. Hannah asked for a son and she received many children (I Samuel chapters 1 & 2). Solomon asked for wisdom and he received much more (I Chronicles 29:7-12).
2. God can do "above what we think" because his thoughts are far above our thoughts: “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:8-9)
3. God can do "exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think" because his grace is exceeding abundant: “And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.” (Titus 1:14)
"according to the power that worketh in us,..."
Once, when I asked God for power in my life he showed me the following verse, impressing upon me that he had already given me what I had asked for - It was his gift that he had put within me - I just needed to exercise it through faith:
“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” (II Timothy 1:7)
“Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.”
The purpose of all things is to bring glory to God:
“And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honor, and power, unto the Lord our God:” (Revelation 19:1)
This glory is in his Church because those whom he has bought compose his church:
“Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.” (Acts 20:28)
Since this is the concluding lesson for Paul’s prayer, let’s look at the whole prayer one more time:
“That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God. 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, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.” (Ephesians 3:16-21)
May God grant you the blessings within this prayer and may God be glorified.