Unending Glory to God
“Now to him… be glory… forever and ever.” (Ephesians 3:21)
Bible Reading: Ephesians 3:20-21
It is common for the apostle Paul, upon reaching a high point of wonder or mystery concerning the gospel, to burst into praise to God in what we call a doxology (a word of glory). This is the case at the end of this third chapter of Ephesians.
“Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think,” he begins (Ephesians 3:20). This characteristic of God is at the forefront of Paul’s mind as he begins this word of praise – God is the One who can do “far more abundantly than all that we ask or think.” It is a wonderful vision. It speaks of the limitless capacity of God to do good to us far beyond what we can even think, let alone ask. And it is not just a little more that he is capable of – he can do “far more abundantly” beyond “all” that we can ask or think!
This reminds me of what the LORD said to Israel through the psalmist in Psalm 81. Bewailing his people’s unfaithfulness, God says, “I am the LORD your God that brought you up out of the land of Egypt. Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it” (Psalm 81:10). This speaks of the largess or generosity of God, his willingness to supply abundantly whatever we need. He bids his people “open their mouths wide” because he can satisfy their deepest needs with good things.
This great God, who has in these gospel days given us the gift of his only Son, can do great things for and in us “according to the power at work within us” (Ephesians 3:20). Paul has just recently prayed that his readers would be “strengthened with power through his Spirit” (v. 16), and it is doubtless the Holy Spirit working within us that he has in mind here. There is no limit to what God can do through the Spirit.
To this great God, then, who is able to do more than we can imagine or ask through his Spirit at work within us, Paul desires that there should be “glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever” (v. 20). He longs that the church would be both a source and a cause of God receiving glory, even as we have seen it to be the object of wonder to rulers and authorities in heavenly places (3:10). Likewise, God’s glory is to be seen especially in Christ Jesus, his beloved Son in whom all his purposes for the ages centre (1:10; 3:11).
This glory, Paul ends, is something that is to be acclaimed “throughout all generations, forever and ever” (v. 20). There is to be no end to the praise of God’s glory.
This is what we are being prepared for – an eternity of praise and glad devotion to our creator, redeemer God. He is truly worthy of this. Let us add our “Amen.”
- Does God’s limitless power to bless you thrill you?
- Does the prospect of worshipping him forever attract you?
– Andrew Young