May God and the Dad of Jesus Christ become present in your life through the Spirit, so that you will have wisdom through a revealing intimacy with Jesus. Ephesians 1:17 (OGV – Old Guy Version)
I have a chair in my office that I sit in for early morning reading of my Bible and for prayer.
This morning, Jesus was standing next to me, His presence real.
Something that I had been worrying about for a week instantly evaporated. Some doubt and frustration from events in our country – gone. The Lord then told me to send a few texts of encouragement to friends, some I haven’t talked to in months. I wanted them to know that God’s presence was going to be with them too.
What an adventure, as I began receiving returned texts of testimony that my messages had brought much needed help.
Going theological for a moment.
Ephesians 1:17 talks about a knowledge of God. Ephesians 1:18 also uses the word “know”. Same word in the English but not in the Greek. In verse 18 “oida” is used, which means technical information, facts, like 2 plus 2 equals 4. Paul prays in Ephesians 1:18 that your eyes may be enlightened so that you know/facts of the hope (historical reality) of Jesus.
Pay attention! Stop daydreaming.
In verse 17 another word for “knowledge” is used which means intimacy or knowledge that comes from experience.
Implication: Verse 18 – factual knowledge; verse 17 – relational knowledge. Most of us have been trained that factual is superior. In Bible college I was trained in the facts with little mention of the relational. Paul indicates by the juxtaposition of the words (when we go theological, I can use big words) that intimate knowledge (v. 17) is needed before you can understand the facts (v. 18).
Faith comes before understanding! Intimacy overcomes the perceived facts of our lack, or why did this happen, or I do not have the ability. When Jesus stands next to you, this is a different reality of which you need factual knowledge to bring you peace.
The beginning of this learning is intimacy!
When Jesus says that He will give peace, He isn’t talking of a magical incantation or taking a pill to bring calm. The presence of Jesus (intimacy) is an actual reality that allows the facts of our despair to shift into the dimension of faith.
There we meet a God of boundless power.
Ephesians 1:17 – Be intimate with Jesus…
Ephesians 1:18 – Realize that what you think are the facts of your current experience are not real…
Ephesians 1:19 – Because Jesus is standing next to you and He has boundless power if we will just believe. (OGV)
The Apostle Paul prays for you in Ephesians 1:15-23. Read this passage yourself several times right now. I loved The Passion Translation of this passage as I read it this morning. It is almost as good as the OGV!
I pray that you will continually experience the immeasurable greatness of God’s power made available to you through faith. Then your lives will be an advertisement of this immense power as it works through you! This is the mighty power! Ephesians 1:19 (TPT)
KNOW: Jesus is standing next to you right now.
FACT: He loves you!
BELIEVE: His immense power will work through you!