Ephesians 3* The apostle sets forth his office, and his qualifications forit, and his call to it. (1-7) Also the noble purposes answeredby it. (8-12) He prays for the Ephesians. (13-19) And adds athanksgiving. (20,21)1-7 For having preached the doctrine of truth, the apostle wasa prisoner, but a prisoner of Jesus Christ; the object ofspecial protection and care, while thus suffering for him. Allthe gracious offers of the gospel, and the joyful tidings itcontains, come from the rich grace of God; it is the great meansby which the Spirit works grace in the souls of men. Themystery, is that secret, hidden purpose of salvation throughChrist. This was not so fully and clearly shown in the agesbefore Christ, as unto the prophets of the New Testament. Thiswas the great truth made known to the apostle, that God wouldcall the Gentiles to salvation by faith in Christ. An effectualworking of Divine power attends the gifts of Divine grace. AsGod appointed Paul to the office, so he qualified him for it. 8-12 Those whom God advances to honourable employments, hemakes low in their own eyes; and where God gives grace to behumble, there he gives all other needful grace. How highly hespeaks of Jesus Christ; the unsearchable riches of Christ!Though many are not enriched with these riches; yet how great afavour to have them preached among us, and to have an offer ofthem! And if we are not enriched with them it is our own fault.The first creation, when God made all things out of nothing, andthe new creation, whereby sinners are made new creatures byconverting grace, are of God by Jesus Christ. His riches are asunsearchable and as sure as ever, yet while angels adore thewisdom of God in the redemption of his church, the ignorance ofself-wise and carnal men deems the whole to be foolishness. 13-19 The apostle seems to be more anxious lest the believersshould be discouraged and faint upon his tribulations, than forwhat he himself had to bear. He asks for spiritual blessings,which are the best blessings. Strength from the Spirit of God inthe inner man; strength in the soul; the strength of faith, toserve God, and to do our duty. If the law of Christ is writtenin our hearts, and the love of Christ is shed abroad there, thenChrist dwells there. Where his Spirit dwells, there he dwells.We should desire that good affections may be fixed in us. Andhow desirable to have a fixed sense of the love of God in Christto our souls! How powerfully the apostle speaks of the love ofChrist! The breadth shows its extent to all nations and ranks;the length, that it continues from everlasting to everlasting;the depth, its saving those who are sunk into the depths of sinand misery; the height, its raising them up to heavenlyhappiness and glory. Those who receive grace for grace fromChrist's fulness, may be said to be filled with the fulness ofGod. Should not this satisfy man? Must he needs fill himselfwith a thousand trifles, fancying thereby to complete hishappiness? 20,21 It is proper always to end prayers with praises. Let usexpect more, and ask for more, encouraged by what Christ hasalready done for our souls, being assured that the conversion ofsinners, and the comfort of believers, will be to his glory, forever and ever.
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