For Mature Audiences

Geoffrey Cox

READ : Ephesians 1:3-14

. . . to the praise of his glorious grace. (v. 6)

Ephesians 1:3-14 is just one sentence sprung from Paul’s Greek mind: long, complex, and very tightly constructed. It will help to read these verses every day for three days, but they still are challenging to understand. Paul is writing for a mature (Christian) audience!

Notice that this is a prayer. Paul shows us how to pray in almost every one of his letters, and he always starts with praise. Verse 3 starts out, “Blessed be . . . God . . . “ This is pure worship of God for who he is in his nature. It then amplifies, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” This is praise for God’s most basic relationship—the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Because God is by nature the Father of Jesus, all fatherhood derives from him (see Ephesians 3:14-15). So we can come trusting his fatherly love and mercy and patience because he is perfect fatherhood, of whom the best of human fathers is but a faint copy. Here is pure loving worship of God as our God. This is the best place to start your prayer, and to stay as long as you can. Just look at God and admire him, and tell him so.

And never forget that others are meant to realize how wonderful God is because they can see a family resemblance in us.

PRAYER

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”