Paul's Spiritual Petition


Elder Robert Willis (dec)

Ephesians 3:16-19, “That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.”

The verses found in Ephesians 3:16-19 reveal much to us about the Apostle Paul as he turned to the Lord in prayer for the believers at Ephesus. Please note what he did not pray for at this time as it is interesting and yet a profound lesson. He did not pray for anything of a material nature, nothing concerning their physical needs, nor included things of a financial sense. Paul didn’t even pray at this time for their sick to be healed or that they would be delivered from persecution by their enemies. This particular prayer was not aimed at anything that seems to be included in our own normal prayer request.


We pray for material things, we pray for healing of the sick, about our problems and those burdens we have in life; and all of these are worthy to be included in our prayers. Paul himself said in Philippians 4:6-7, “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Certainly we must be careful to not be selfish when we pray.

However, at this time Paul saw a specific need. While it may be the financial, material, and physical things that seem to occupy our immediately thinking, it is the SPIRITUAL that should be up most in our hearts when we pray. So many of these things will not be problems or issues in our life within a year, a month, a week, or even tomorrow. Spiritual matters are ALWAYS, and should be, foremost in our minds.

As Paul prayed for those Saints of God at Ephesus, his focus was entirely on their spiritual welfare. II Corinthians 4:16-18 says, “For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.”


Should we pray? Yes, of course. We are to “Pray without ceasing” (I Thessalonians 5:17). However, we should never neglect praying for the spiritual welfare for ourselves, our family, and all those who love His appearing.


“Think About It!”