Friday, September 14, 2012

Day 258: Bible Study on Ephesians 3:11-21...

 Here is a Bible Study I did with friends last week on Ephesians 3:11-21... thought you all might be blessed by it too. I also have two small devotionals by Joyce Meyer, on a few of the verses that we studied. She helped me see them a bit clearer. You don’t have to agree to any of it, if you don’t feel it’s right, I just thought you might be blessed by it. I also have the section of verses below in the AMP version if you don’t have a Bible near you. :-)
Pleas feel free to leave your own opinion on the verses. I love learning and it’s pretty awesome to share and grow in God’s word together.
In His Grace~

– Be Filled!
Just imagine having your personality filled with the Holy Spirit of the living God and being a body wholly filled with God Himself (see Ephesians 3:16- 19)! The apostle Paul was a person filled with the Holy Spirit; he was also a person who forsook all to follow Jesus. Any area of our lives that we hold back from God is an area where we cannot be filled with His Spirit. I encourage you to open and surrender every room in your heart to God. Your time is His; your money is His, as are your gifts and talents, your family, your career, thoughts, attitudes, and desires. He wants to be involved in every area of your life: how you dress, the friends you choose, what you do for entertainment, what you eat, and so on.

After conversion, Jesus is our Savior, but is He our Lord? Any area we claim as our own is one we have not surrendered to the lordship of Jesus Christ.

I lived a defeated life for many years simply because I was not fully surrendered. I accepted Jesus as Savior; I had enough of Jesus to stay out of hell, but I had not accepted Him as my Lord in every area of my life; I had not accepted enough of Him to walk in victory— and there is a difference.

The blessedness of being filled with the Spirit is clearly visible in the change in the people’s lives after Pentecost. Peter, for example, who displayed great fear in not being willing to even admit that he knew Jesus, became a bold apostle who stood in the streets of Jerusalem and preached the gospel so fervently that three thousand souls were added to the church in one day (see Acts 2: 40, 41).

Complete surrender to God brings good change into our lives. Surrendering to Him actually opens the door to the things we desire, and yet we waste our own energy trying to obtain access to them our own way. I encourage you today to surrender every area of your life to God so you may be filled to overflowing with His Spirit in every way.

– Believe BIG...

In the natural, many things are impossible. But in the supernatural realm with God, nothing is impossible. God wants us to believe for great things, make big plans and expect Him to do things so great that we are left with our mouths hanging open in awe. James 4:2 tells us we have not because we ask not! We can be bold in our asking, and Ephesians 3:20 challenges us to ask for big things.

When our desires seem overwhelmingly big and we do not see the way to accomplish them, we should remember that even though we do not know the way, we know the Waymaker!

God has a way for us to do everything He places in our hearts. He does not put dreams and visions in us to frustrate us. We must keep our confidence in God all the way through to the end, not just for a little bit and then give up when it looks as though the mountain is too big!

It is untold what people can do— even people who do not appear to be able to do anything. God does not usually call people what are capable; if He did, He would not get the glory. He frequently chooses those who, in the natural, feel as if they are in completely over their heads but who are ready to stand up on the inside and take bold steps of faith as they receive direction from God.

We usually want to wait until we “feel ready” before we step out, but if we feel ready, then we tend to lean on ourselves instead of on God.

Know your weaknesses and know God; know His strength and faithfulness. Remember that He is able to do “superabundantly, far over and above” everything you could ever dare to ask or think!

Ephesians 3:11-21
This is in accordance with the terms of the eternal and timeless purpose which He has realized and carried into effect in [the person of] Christ Jesus our Lord,

12 In Whom, because of our faith in Him, we dare to have the boldness (courage and confidence) of free access (an unreserved approach to God with freedom and without fear).

13 So I ask you not to lose heart [not to faint or become despondent through fear] at what I am suffering in your behalf. [Rather glory in it] for it is an honor to you.

14 For this reason [seeing the greatness of this plan by which you are built together in Christ], I bow my knees before the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,

15 For Whom every family in heaven and on earth is named [that Father from Whom all fatherhood takes its title and derives its name].

16 May He grant you out of the rich treasury of His glory to be strengthened and reinforced with mighty power in the inner man by the [Holy] Spirit [Himself indwelling your innermost being and personality].

17 May Christ through your faith [actually] dwell (settle down, abide, make His permanent home) in your hearts! May you be rooted deep in love and founded securely on love,

18 That you may have the power and be strong to apprehend and grasp with all the saints [God’s devoted people, the experience of that love] what is the breadth and length and height and depth [of it];

19 [That you may really come] to know [practically, through experience for yourselves] the love of Christ, which far surpasses mere knowledge [without experience]; that you may be filled [through all your being] unto all the fullness of God [may have the richest measure of the divine Presence, and become a body wholly filled and flooded with God Himself]!

20 Now to Him Who, by (in consequence of) the [action of His] power that is at work within us, is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly, far over and above all that we [dare] ask or think [infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes, or dreams]—

21 To Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations forever and ever. Amen (so be it).

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