17 May 2012
God is a god of power, manifested in the creation of the world and in His mighty acts in the Old Testament. In our text, St. Paul connects two other events with the power of God – the resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ and the new life of the Christian. Here we see God’s power at work.
1. In Christ’s resurrection and ascension.
A. God raised Christ (he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms Ephesians 1:20)
1. To show His acceptance of the redemptive work of Christ (He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification Romans 4:25; But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him. Acts 2:24)
2. As the first-fruits of those asleep (But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the first-fruits of those who have fallen asleep 1 Corinthians 15:20)
B. God set Christ at His own right hand (Ephesians 1:20)
1. A place of honor and power above every power ( 2. He put all things under His feet; Christ is conqueror over sin, death, and the devil (1 Corinthians 15:55-57)
3. He is Head over all things to the Church (And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church Ephesians 1:22)
a. Christ dwells in each Christian, and each Christians in Him (far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. Ephesians 1:21)
b. He intercedes for us (Therefore he is able to save completely[a] those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. Hebrews 7:25)
c. He rules all things in the interest of His church (And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church Ephesians 1:22)
2. In the new life of the Christian.
A. The Ephesians were manifesting the new life in faith and love. (For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people Ephesians 1:15)
B. Paul prays for the Spirit of wisdom and revelation (Sanctify them by[a] the truth; your word is truth. John 17:17)
1. That you may know Christ ( and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in[a] Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, Philippians 3:8-10)
2. That you may know the hope of His calling (I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, Ephesians 1:18)
3. That you may know the riches of the glory of His inheritance (I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, Ephesians 1:18)
God is a God of power. How comforting to our faith that God’s power raised Christ and gave Him glory. Through the Word and Sacraments God’s Spirit continues to comfort us with Christ and our Christian hope.