These expository articles have been created from my notes
of sermons given by a local new covenant Christian church which
possesses strong understanding in the Word of God in the verse
by verse, chapter by chapter format of Bible study (expository).
This study in Ephesians can lead a Christian to a fuller understanding
of what it means to have Jesus Christ more fully in them, through
the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. The study titled
"Ephesians 4:1-16" is not taken from any sermon given by this
local church, but is my own take on what unity in the body of
Christ may represent.
It is not the intention of this Christian unity web-page to draw
any Christian from one fellowship into another, but instead to
see Christians everywhere who utilize this site strengthened in
their walk with Jesus right where they are, in the fellowship
theyre already an active part of.This sentiment
holds especially true for my beloved brethren in the Worldwide
Church of God. Be strengthened, and remain active members of the
body of Jesus Christ right where you are.
Four Steps to Power
Jeremiah 6:16. "This is what the Lord says: 'Stand at the
crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the
good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.'
But you say, 'We will not walk in it.'" At the time this was written,
Judah was at a crossroads in her history. We in America are also
at a crossroads--as a nation we're on a slippery slide on the
way to a cliff with oblivion at the bottom of the cliff. What
the Church needs right now is power. There are four key steps
to obtaining power from God:
Pray--prayer, prevailing prayer.
Seek God's face
Ephesians 3:1-7, "For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner
of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles--Surely you have
heard about the administration of God's grace that was given
to me for you, that is, the mystery made known to me by revelation,
as I have already written briefly. In reading this, then, you
will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ,
which was not made known to men in other generations as it has
now been revealed by the Spirit to God's holy apostles and prophets.
This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs
together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers
together in the promise in Christ Jesus. I BECAME A SERVANT
[MINISTER] OF THIS GOSPEL BY THE GIFT OF GOD'S GRACE GIVEN ME
THROUGH THE WORKING OF HIS POWER."
DENY YOURSELVES: In verse 7 he said he was a minister or servant
of this gospel. You don't become a minister unless you're a
prisoner of Jesus Christ. He was a prisoner because he kept
opening his mouth. He states in verse 1 that he was a prisoner
of Christ Jesus." Paul was first a prisoner of Christ by denying
himself. Your first step to power is to deny yourself. Chain
yourself to Christ is the first step to power. Paul was a prisoner
for the Gentiles, other people, as verse 1 states. Mom's with
little children feel like they're prisoners in jail. They in
fact are prisoners of Christ for their children.
In verse 6 we see that Paul was given a dispensation--a stewardship
to preach the gospel. The mystery was the gospel that made the
Gentiles and Jew co-heirs of the kingdom of God and the Promises
of Christ. That message angered the [unconverted] Jews to no
"Although I am less than the least of all God's people, this
grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable
riches of Christ, and to make plain to everyone the administration
of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God,
who created all things. His intent was that now, through the
church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to
the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, according
to his eternal purpose which he accomplished in Christ Jesus
our Lord. In him and through faith in him we may approach
God with freedom and confidence. I ask you, therefore, not
to be discouraged because of my sufferings for you, which
are your glory." I.e. Don't worry about my chains. Rejoice
that I'm a prisoner for you.
HUMBLE OURSELVES: vs. 8, "Although I am less than the least
of all God's people, this grace was given me: to preach to the
Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ " Paul considered
himself less than all the saints. He felt he was the least of
all the saints. God uses the humble to show forth his power.
You can deny yourself (step one), but can still have a problem
with pride. We think we have something going for us, when we
really don't. We can have all the doctrine right, but forget
the depth of God's power. Never think you know it all. Don't
care so much about head knowledge, but be happy because we know
God. Solomon had spiritual head knowledge beyond our ability
to understand, yet his salvation is in question to this very
SEEK GOD'S FACE: Vs. 8-11, "Although I am less than the least
of all God's people, this grace was given me: to preach to the
Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to make plain
to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages
past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. His intent
was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God
should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly
realms, according to his eternal purpose which he accomplished
in Christ Jesus our Lord."
Every sermon reveals the insight, depth and span of God's knowledge
and riches we have in Christ. The manifold wisdom of God is
being revealed in and to his Church, Christ's body of believers.
Even the heavenly realm of holy angels are learning by watching
and listening to what is being taught and preached within the
Church, Jesus Christ's body of believers.
IV. WE CAN PRAY WITH BOLDNESS. PRAYER MOVES MOUNTAINS. We
obtain the power of God when we ask for it, and we deny ourselves
when we pray for God's power. Every single revival has started
with earnest prevailing prayer. If you don't believe me, just
There is a tombstone in upstate New York which reads "Daniel
Nash, labourer with Finney, mighty in prayer." Daniel Nash prayed
in every town Charles Finney had a revival in. Over 100,000 people
were brought to Christ in Rochester, New York. It's hard to minister
without power. There's a whole other level of power here that
we need. " "Father Nash," as some called him, would quietly slip
into a town three or four weeks before Finney's arrival, rent
a room, find two or three other like-minded Christians to join
him, and start pleading with God. In one town the best he could
find was a dark, damp cellar; it became his center for intercession.
In another place, Finney relates, When I got to town to start
a revival a lady contacted me who ran a boarding house. She said, "Brother
Finney, do you know a Father Nash? He and two other men have been
at my boarding house for the last three days, but they haven't
eaten a bite of food. I opened the door and peeped in at them
because I could hear them groaning, and I saw them down on their
faces. They have been this way for three days, lying prostrate
on the floor groaning. I thought something awful must have happened
to them, I was afraid to go in and I didn't know what to do. Would
you please see about them?"
"No, it isn't necessary,"
I replied. "They just have a spirit of travail in prayer."
Do you want to see the affect of Daniel Nash's intercessory prayer
in just one city? Read on. "A convert in Rochester, New York,
left a description of Finney's revival ministry in that city in
which more than a hundred thousand came to saving knowledge of
the Lord Jesus within one year. He wrote: "The whole community
was stirred. Religion was the topic of conversation, in the house,
in the shop, in the office, and on the street The only theater
in the city was converted into a livery stable; the only circus
into a soap and candle factory. Grog [beer] shops were closed;
the Sabbath was honored; the sanctuaries were thronged with happy
worshippers; a new impulse was given to every philanthropic enterprise;
the fountains of benevolence were opened and men lived to do good."
The report continues: "It is worthy of special notice that a large
number of leading men of the place were among the converts--the
lawyers, the judges, physicians, merchants, bankers and master
mechanics. These classes were more moved from the very first than
any other. Tall oaks were bowed as by the blast of a hurricane.
Skeptics and scoffers were brought in, and a large number of the
most promising young men. It is said that no less than forty of
them entered the ministry
"It is not too much to say that the whole character of the city
was changed by that revival," wrote this eyewitness.
"Most of the leaders of society being converted, and exerting
a controlling influence in social life, in business, and in civil
affairs, religion was enthroned as it had been in few places .Even
the courts and the prisons bore witness to its blessed effects.
There was a wonderful falling off of crime. The courts had little
to do, and the jail was nearly empty for years afterward." That's
power--the power of prevailing prayer.