About this study:

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 they’re 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.

Ephesians 3:1-13,

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:

  1. Deny ourselves,
  2. Humble ourselves,
  3. Pray--prayer, prevailing prayer.
  4. 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."

  1. 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 end.

    Verses 8-13, "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.

  2. 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 day.

  3. 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.

  4. 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 read this:

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.