Have you ever felt stuck in your prayer life? One of the best ways we can level up is to pray the Scriptures.
I love the Apostle Paul’s prayer at the beginning of his letter to the believers in Ephesus. I find myself praying it often. And I can see the benefits.
I’ve also heard strong testimonies of others who have prayed this prayer.
This article is part of a series exploring how we can agree in prayer with the great Apostle Paul.
Jesus Smart: Ask for a Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation (Ephesians 1:15-23)
Paul prayed …
That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know:
1) what is the hope of His calling,
2) what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,
3) and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe.
When Paul heard about their faith in Jesus and their love for others in the Body of Christ, he prayed this prayer for the church in Ephesus (verses 15-16). Faith and love are foundational to our success in Jesus’ Kingdom.
Pray with Paul that the Father will give you an increasing measure of the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Christ.
Believers already have the Holy Spirit within. But this is a request for a heightened activity of the Spirit, helping us to experience more wisdom and revelation.
This is such a high-level, high-leverage request! It automatically covers so many things. It’s influence filters down to cover the practical areas of our life.
Know the King to Know How the Kingdom Works
Knowledge in this passage is epignosis in New Testament Greek—a word which means advanced knowledge. We can see it as “higher education” … it comes from a higher plane!
This knowledge includes a personal, relational knowledge of Jesus himself. That’s the real source of everything good in Jesus’ kingdom. To know him more and more.
Remember, a kingdom is the domain of a king. So to be successful in Jesus’ Kingdom, we seek to know the king himself, as well as understanding his teaching and modeling!
We cannot experience the domain without experiencing the king of that domain.
Access Knowledge About Anything
There’s even more. The knowledge of Christ also includes a sphere of information and knowledge which emanates from Christ.
We have access to all wisdom and the highest information—about anything and everything! This can be practical and concrete.
(See how the Creator revealed to George Washington Carver the mysteries of the peanut and other crops, transforming American agriculture in the 1800’s.)
“In whom [Christ] are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:3 NAS).
The Greek in this prayer has the sense of the spirit of wisdom and revelation which operates within the sphere of our knowledge of Christ. This is a knowledge of who he is as a member of the Godhead. But it’s also our relational knowledge of Christ … our relationship with Christ deepens. I take it to mean this: as a Christ-follower, everything we want and need to know is wrapped up in who Christ is to us personally.
Revelation First. Then Understanding.
Paul then asks that the eyes of their heart will be enlightened.
“And [I pray] that the eyes of your heart [the very center and core of your being] may be enlightened [flooded with light by the Holy Spirit], so that you will know …” Ephesians 1:18 Amplified
Revelation is an uncovering of something which has always been there. It’s just revealed to us for the first time.
God does not hide things from us, he hides them for us.
Then there is an opportunity for our understanding to be renewed so that it aligns with the revelation. This is the transformation of the mind Paul spoke of in Romans 12:2. And the renewing of the spirit of the mind in Ephesians 4:23.
It seems there’s usually a lag between revelation and understanding. But as our mind is renewed, it creates an abundant internal state. Our internals harmonize with the potential of Christ’s world (kingdom)!
Calling, Inheritance, and Power!
We have a calling from God in Christ!
Calling is so powerful.
Os Guinness writes, “Calling is the truth that God calls us to himself so decisively that everything we are, everything we do, and everything we have is invested with a special devotion and dynamism lived out as a response to his summons and service” (The Call: Finding and Fulfilling the Central Purpose of Your Life).
The riches of Christ’s inheritance are ours!
The saints carry it. “What are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints.” Somehow, the inheritance of Christ is distributed throughout the Body of Christ.
In Christ, you’re wealthy! Pray that you will know what you have in him. More and more, quest to appreciate the worth of what he’s placed within you. It’s progressive. Then take faith-steps accordingly.
God’s power is directed toward those who believe
“… and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe.”
Do you see that? God’s power flows toward accurate belief. Pray that you will receive and express the power of God … in life, work, and ministry.
David wrote, “God has spoken once, twice I have heard this: that power belongs to God” (Psalm 62:11). God gives his power to us as we use it according to his design. His design for everything. “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes …” (Romans 1:16).
Salvation (soteria in Gk.) is deliverance, soundness, healing, provision and more. It’s a big word and a big Kingdom concept which covers a lot of things! Believe for it. Power from above brings us into this comprehensive salvation.
Invest some time in verses 19-23 of Ephesians 1. Take note of the scale and extent of God’s power which is available to us. It’s extraordinary!
A spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Christ. Will you try praying this prayer for 7 days? 21 days? Quest to express your faith with the great Apostle Paul and millions of believers. Experiment. Try new things in the realm of faith.
Here’s the first article in this series: I Pray with the Apostle Paul