7 I became a servant of the gospel because of the grace that God showed me through the exercise of his power.
8 God gave his grace to me, the least of all God’s people, to preach the good news about the immeasurable riches of Christ to the Gentiles. 9 God sent me to reveal the secret plan [literally mystery] that had been hidden since the beginning of time by God, who created everything. 10 God’s purpose is now to show the rulers and powers in the heavens the many different varieties of his wisdom through the church. 11 This was consistent with the plan he had from the beginning of time that he accomplished through Christ Jesus our Lord. 12 In Christ we have bold and confident access to God through faith in him. 13 So then, I ask you not to become discouraged by what I’m suffering for you, which is your glory.
14 This is why I kneel before the Father. 15 Every ethnic group in heaven or on earth is recognized by him. 16 I ask that he will strengthen you in your inner selves from the riches of his glory through the Spirit. 17 I ask that Christ will live in your hearts through faith. As a result of having strong roots in love, 18 I ask that you’ll have the power to grasp love’s width and length, height and depth, together with all believers. 19 I ask that you’ll know the love of Christ that is beyond knowledge so that you will be filled entirely with the fullness of God.
20 Glory to God, who is able to do far beyond all that we could ask or imagine by his power at work within us; 21 glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus for all generations, forever and always. Amen.
In verses 7, 18 and 20 this passage cited God’s power. It used the Greek word dunamis, the root of the word “dynamite”! It didn’t see “church” as static or boring, but as cosmic energy at work for eternal purposes. Inside the church, when it serves as God intends, we find pardon, friendship and healing. But those gifts can never stay locked inside. God’s purpose is to show “the many different varieties of his wisdom through the church.” That’s why Resurrection is “one church in many locations” —to do all we can to give “glory to [God] in the church.”
- When Ephesians spoke of “the church,” the term (Greek ecclesia) did not mean a building or organization. It was an assembly, a group of people led by and sharing God. How does it shift the ways you think about the buildings we build, the campuses we create, and the questions we ask, to think of them as tools to serve God’s powerful mission, rather than an end in themselves?
- The Greek word translated “the many different varieties of his wisdom” in verse 10 was “polupoikilos.” It meant “many colored”—as though Paul was picturing God’s grace and wisdom as a kind of dazzling rainbow. In what ways has God’s grace and wisdom added color and beauty to your life? How can you help your church, including the new Overland Park location, reflect that beauty to all we contact?
Lord God, I so grateful for the grace you’ve showed in calling me to be a member of your church. Guide me today and every day that my life may reflect your wisdom and power. Amen.
Randy Greene is a part of the Communications team at the Church of the Resurrection. He helps develop and maintain the church's family of websites. He is also a graduate of Central Baptist Theological Seminary and loves to write stories about faithfulness.