Read Ephesians 3:1-13
By God’s grace and mighty power, I have been given the privilege of serving him by spreading this Good News.
Though I am the least deserving of all God’s people, he graciously gave me the privilege of telling the Gentiles about the endless treasures available to them in Christ. I was chosen to explain to everyone this mysterious plan that God, the Creator of all things, had kept secret from the beginning.
God’s purpose in all this was to use the church to display his wisdom in its rich variety to all the unseen rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. This was his eternal plan, which he carried out through Christ Jesus our Lord.
Because of Christ and our faith in him, we can now come boldly and confidently into God’s presence. So please don’t lose heart because of my trials here. I am suffering for you, so you should feel honored.
If Paul had not preached the Good News, he would not be in jail—but then the Ephesians would not have heard the Good News and been converted either. Just as a mother endures the pain of childbirth in order to bring new life into the world, Paul endured the pain of persecution in order to bring the truth of God’s plan to the people of Ephesus—and then to us.
God’s plan was not revealed to previous generations, not because God wanted to keep something from his people, but because he would reveal it to everyone in his perfect timing. God planned to have Jews and Gentiles comprise one body, the church. It was known in the Old Testament that the Gentiles would receive salvation (Isaiah 49:6); but it was never revealed in the Old Testament that all Gentile and Jewish believers would become equal in the body of Christ. Yet this equality was accomplished when Jesus destroyed the “wall of hostility” and created “one new people” (Ephesians 2:14-15). As a result, we can approach God anywhere, anytime.
Being able to approach God with freedom and confidence is an awesome privilege. Most of us would be apprehensive in the presence of a powerful ruler. But thanks to Christ, by faith we can enter directly into God’s presence through prayer.
Don’t be afraid of God. Go with confidence to him. You’ll be welcomed with open arms because you are God’s child through your union with Christ. You can talk with him about anything—your joys, worries, fears. He is waiting to hear from you. Seek his wisdom and mercy.
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