You’ve heard the phrase “more than meets the eye”? It’s when there is more to something than you first see. So, when you buy a house, you don’t want to sign the papers and then find out that there was “more than meets the eye” under the floorboards. Or, on the positive side, sometimes people have hidden gifts and talents that you don’t see at first glance, so there is “more than meets the eye” about them.
The phrase is important because when you think of the world we live in, there is actually more to it than meets the eye.
I think of the incredible story of Elisha and his servant being pursued by the King of Syria, and one day they woke up surrounded by the evil king’s armies. Well, the servant woke up anyway; apparently Elisha was sleeping like a baby…
When the servant of the man of God rose early in the morning and went out, behold, an army with horses and chariots was all around the city. And the servant said, “Alas, my master! What shall we do?” 2 Kings 6:15 (ESV)
But Elisha calmed his fears with a remarkable statement…
He said, “Do not be afraid, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” 2 Kings 6:16 (ESV)
And then Elisha prayed a prayer for his servant that we ought to pray for one another…
Then Elisha prayed and said, “O LORD, please open his eyes that he may see.” So the LORD opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. 2 Kings 6:17 (ESV)
It was a glorious and happy surprise to Elisha’s servant when the Lord opened his eyes. And that said…I like to imagine that Paul the Apostle was thinking about this story when he told the Ephesians that this is what he prayed for them…
…that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe… Ephesians 1:17-20 (ESV)
It’s important to remember that Paul was writing to Christians. This is not a prayer that they would come to Christ, but that they as believers would see that the resources they have. I think this means that many of us don’t see what we could see…if we only prayed that God would open our eyes, and the eyes of those we love.
And in particular, the Apostle wanted the people of Ephesus to have their eyes opened to see three things:
- First, the great hope that they have. This is heaven. And how many Christians live nearly every day without thinking about heaven and the joy that awaits them there.
- And second, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints. Pay attention now – This is not our inheritance – this is God’s inheritance. Yes we have a great inheritance ourselves – that’s the hope we have in the gospel, but he also wanted us to see what God’s inheritance of us means to Him. Here’s how he puts it – we are His riches. Glory to God. You can think on that for the next three years. Sum it up this way though – Christian, he loves you a lot. You are part of God’s riches.
- And third, Paul prayed that these believers would know the immeasurable greatness of God’s power toward those who believe. Paul says that this great power is the power that raised Jesus from the dead…available to us…the immeasurable greatness of God’s power toward those who believe.
And so, moved by Paul’s example, it’s been probably about two decades that I’ve been praying this prayer out of Ephesians 1 for myself and for those I love, and I invite you to join me, because I don’t know about you…but I’d like to see a few chariots of fire.
For tomorrow, Wednesday, June 24th: Ephesians 2
June 23, 2015 at 7:18 am
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