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Ephesians 1:17-19 meaning...

In these verses, the Apostle Paul offers a powerful prayer for the believers in Ephesus, expressing his desire for their spiritual growth and understanding. 

  • A Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation: 
Paul prays that God, the Father of glory, would grant the believers a spirit of wisdom and revelation. This prayer highlights the importance of divine insight and understanding in the knowledge of God. It emphasizes the need for spiritual discernment and illumination through the Holy Spirit. Wisdom enables believers to make godly decisions and discern God's will, while revelation unveils the mysteries and truths of God's character and purposes.
  • Enlightened Hearts: 
Paul desires that the eyes of the believers' hearts be enlightened. This spiritual enlightenment refers to a deep, experiential knowledge of God's truth and love. It goes beyond intellectual understanding and touches the core of one's being. An enlightened heart allows believers to see and perceive spiritual realities clearly, fostering a closer relationship with God.
  • Knowing the Hope of His Calling: 
Paul's prayer is that believers may know the hope of God's calling for their lives. The calling of God encompasses His purpose, plan, and destiny for each believer. Understanding and embracing God's calling gives meaning and direction to one's life, providing a firm foundation for faith and obedience.
  • Riches of the Glory of His Inheritance: 
Paul prays that believers may know the riches of the glory of God's inheritance in the saints. This inheritance refers to the blessings, rewards, and eternal life that await believers as heirs of God's kingdom. It includes the abundant spiritual blessings that come from being united with Christ and partaking in the divine nature.
  • Exceeding Greatness of His Power: 
Finally, Paul desires that believers grasp the exceeding greatness of God's power toward those who believe. This power is the same mighty strength that raised Jesus from the dead and exalted Him above all authority and dominion. It is the divine power that works in the lives of believers, empowering them to live victoriously and fulfill God's purposes.

In these verses, Paul's prayer reveals the depth of his pastoral concern for the spiritual growth and maturity of the believers. His desire is that they experience the fullness of their relationship with God through wisdom, revelation, hope, inheritance, and the manifestation of God's power.


The application of Ephesians 1:17-19 extends beyond the Ephesian church and applies to all believers today. Paul's prayer encourages us to seek a deeper understanding of God's truth and love. It reminds us to cultivate a spirit of wisdom and revelation through prayer, study of God's Word, and fellowship with the Holy Spirit.

Through spiritual enlightenment, believers can discern God's calling and purpose for their lives, finding confidence and purpose in following His lead. Understanding the riches of God's inheritance strengthens our faith and hope in the promises of God.

Furthermore, acknowledging the exceeding greatness of God's power in our lives empowers us to live victoriously and overcome the challenges we may face.


Practical Application:

A Prayer for Spiritual Growth: Ephesians 1:17-19 serves as a model prayer for believers, inviting them to seek a deeper spiritual understanding and experience. It encourages a continual pursuit of wisdom, revelation, and the transformative power of God in their lives.

Identity and Purpose: The passage prompts believers to reflect on their identity in Christ and the hope of their calling. It challenges them to recognize the richness of their inheritance in God and the profound purpose that stems from this knowledge.


Cross-References:

Colossians 1:9-10: "For this cause, we also, since the day we heard this, don't cease praying and making requests for you, that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, that you may walk worthily of the Lord, to please him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God." This parallel passage from Colossians reinforces the theme of seeking spiritual wisdom and understanding.

Ephesians 3:16: "that he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, that you may be strengthened with power through his Spirit in the inward person." This verse aligns with the concept of divine empowerment through the Spirit, echoing the sentiments expressed in Ephesians 1:17-19.


In summary, Ephesians 1:17-19 reflects the heart of Paul's pastoral prayer for the believers in Ephesus. His desire is for them to grow in wisdom, revelation, hope, understanding of God's inheritance, and awareness of God's mighty power at work in their lives. These verses serve as a timeless reminder for believers to seek a deeper relationship with God, to comprehend His calling and inheritance, and to experience the transformative power of His Spirit in their daily lives. As we embrace this prayer, we are drawn closer to God's heart and purpose for our lives, finding strength and assurance in His abundant grace and love.


Ephesians 1:17-19. The God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him; having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope of his calling, and what are the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to that working of the strength of his might.