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He explains the cause of his imprisonment, and more of the revelation of the mystery of Christ. He desires them not to faint because of his trouble, and prays God to make them steadfast in his Spirit.

For this then I, Paul, am in the bonds of Jesus Christ, for the sake of you who are heathen – if you have heard of the ministration of the grace of God that is given to me for you. For by revelation he showed this mystery to me, as I wrote above in a few words, from which, when you read, you may know my understanding in the mystery of Christ. This mystery was not in times past opened to the sons of men as it is now revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit: that the Gentiles should be inheritors also, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise that is in Christ by the means of the gospel – of which gospel I am made a minister by the gift of the grace of God given to me through the working of his power. To me, the least of all saints, is this grace given, to preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to make all men see what the fellowship of the mystery is.

This mystery has from the beginning of the world been hid in God, who made all things through Jesus Christ, 10 to the intent that now, through the congregation, the manifold wisdom of God may be made known to the rulers and powers in heaven, 11 according to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12 by whom we are bold to draw near in the confidence that we have by faith on him.

13 Therefore I desire that you faint not because of my tribulations for your sakes, which are worthy to be glorified by you. 14 For this I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 who is Father over all that is called father in heaven and in earth. 16 I pray that he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with power by his Spirit in the inner man, 17 and that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith, so that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is that breadth and length, depth and height, 19 and to know what is the love of Christ, which love passes knowledge; that you might be filled with every kind of fullness that comes of God.

20 Now to him who is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think by the power that works in us, 21 be praise in the congregation by Jesus Christ throughout all generations, world without end.

Amen.

God’s Marvelous Plan for the Gentiles

For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner(A) of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles—

Surely you have heard about the administration of God’s grace that was given to me(B) for you, that is, the mystery(C) made known to me by revelation,(D) as I have already written briefly. In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight(E) into the mystery of Christ, which was not made known to people in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets.(F) This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs(G) together with Israel, members together of one body,(H) and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.(I)

I became a servant of this gospel(J) by the gift of God’s grace given me(K) through the working of his power.(L) Although I am less than the least of all the Lord’s people,(M) this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles(N) the boundless riches of Christ,(O) and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery,(P) which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. 10 His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God(Q) should be made known(R) to the rulers and authorities(S) in the heavenly realms,(T) 11 according to his eternal purpose(U) that he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. 12 In him and through faith in him we may approach God(V) with freedom and confidence.(W) 13 I ask you, therefore, not to be discouraged because of my sufferings for you, which are your glory.

A Prayer for the Ephesians

14 For this reason I kneel(X) before the Father, 15 from whom every family[a] in heaven and on earth derives its name. 16 I pray that out of his glorious riches(Y) he may strengthen you with power(Z) through his Spirit in your inner being,(AA) 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts(AB) through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted(AC) and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people,(AD) to grasp how wide and long and high and deep(AE) is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge(AF)—that you may be filled(AG) to the measure of all the fullness of God.(AH)

20 Now to him who is able(AI) to do immeasurably more than all we ask(AJ) or imagine, according to his power(AK) that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.(AL)

Footnotes

  1. Ephesians 3:15 The Greek for family (patria) is derived from the Greek for father (pater).

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