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The love that surpasses knowledge

Paul prays an extraordinary prayer for the Ephesian believers in Eph 3: 14 – 21.

First, he prays that they be strengthened with God’s supernatural power, ‘through His Spirit in your inner being’ (v 16). He wants them to experience Christ dwelling in their hearts as they daily put their faith in Him (see v 17). He is not praying theory, head knowledge, or an accumulation of fascinating facts, but for the reality of God’s Presence in their lives.

In fact, the second half of v 17 seems to suggest His Presence in our inner being is an essential part of being ‘rooted and established in (His) love’. Christ dwells in us by the presence of His Holy Spirit and He brings with Him the eternal, life-changing love that drove Him to the cross.

Paul then prays that they (and we), ‘grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ’ (v 18). That’s big! That’s like trying to describe the tiniest details of the Grand Canyon when you are standing at the bottom of one small part of it. It, surely, can’t be done! And yet, Paul prays it for the Ephesians and for every believer he knows.

Perhaps, the key to believing that such a big prayer can be answered is that everything is possible ‘through his Spirit’. The more we invite him into our inner being, the more we open up our hearts as a welcome home for Christ to dwell, the more, maybe, we can begin to grasp the vast volumes of His love. And what might seem impossible is nothing to Him ‘who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work in us’ (v 20).

In other words, today, according to Paul, even 2,000 years after this letter was written, you and I and all other believers in the 21st century can be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God – we can know the love that surpasses knowledge (see v 19). We can dive into the mysteries of Christ’s love, continually growing in our knowledge and experience of that love, because He lives in our souls.

Perhaps, like Paul, we just need to keep praying for it. For ourselves, for our loved ones, for our churches, and for our communities and governments.

Let’s keep knocking on that door and asking


Suggested prayer: Lord, your Word tells me that you love me. Thank you for that love. I want to be rooted and established in that love. I ask that your love might be at the core of everything I do. For the rest of my life, Lord, help me to grow in the knowledge of the depth, height, length and breadth of your love. Amen


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