Ben Reaoch | Category: The Church Community
Let’s be encouraged by Paul’s prayer for the church in Ephesus.
“For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.” (Ephesians 1:15–23, ESV)
There are five words in verses 17-18 that relate to the knowledge that Paul is praying for: wisdom, revelation, knowledge, being enlightened, that you may know. This is Paul’s prayer, and it is a prayer we can pray as well as we ask God to revive His people. We desperately need to know God. We need the eyes of our hearts to be enlightened. And what is it we need to know? Answer: We need to know the hope to which we He has called us. The more we are filled with this knowledge, the more we will be filled with hope. This will result in our lives being a greater testimony to God’s grace. We need to see and know God.
It is similar to Moses’ prayer in Exodus 33, where God threatens to withdraw His presence from the Israelites because they’re a stiff-necked people. But Moses pleads with God to reveal Himself and not to withdraw His presence. He says, “Now therefore, if I have found favor in your sight, please show me now your ways, that I may know you in order to find favor in your sight” (Ex 33:13). And then he says, “Please show me your glory” (v. 18).
Let’s pray like this. Let’s pray that God will reveal Himself more and more to us and that He will give us spiritual eyes to see Him more clearly. I long to see more of God, and I long to see true revival in our day. I find these words of Jonathan Edwards to be very motivating:
“When God has something very great to accomplish for his church, it is his will that there should precede it the extraordinary prayers of his people . . . . When [God] is about to bestow some great blessing on his church, it is often his manner, in the first place, so to order things in his providence, as to show his church their great need of it, and to bring them into distress for want of it, and so to put them upon crying earnestly to him for it” (Thoughts on the Revival, Vol. 1, Works, pg. 426).
Let us recognize our desperate need, and let us cry out to Him for revival.
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