By Stan Brown
Ephesians 3:19 and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fulness of God.
Paul completes his prayer that is essentially about each believer coming to an understanding of the love of Christ. Paul prays that the power of God might strengthen us in the inner person resulting in Christ dwelling in us (this is not the salvation experience of the indwelling Holy Spirit but rather experiencing Christ’s love daily) so that we might experientially understand the love of Christ. It is the love of Christ that empowers our living.
The word order of the sentence in Greek is different than the English translation as it begins with the phrase to know that which surpasses knowledge. Both the verb to know and the noun knowledge are from the same root. The word order emphasizes that Paul is praying that we might know the unknowable. How can we possibly know that which is unknowable? He has told us how in the preceding verses when he writes so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. It is a matter of Christ being in complete control of our lives in order that we might EXPERIENCE HIS LOVE. All the teaching in the world will never let us understand the richness and deepness of God’s love but as the Holy Spirit empowers us in our inner person to let Christ dwell there, we experience that which is unknowable. The more we know about Christ’s love the more we are amazed by it. The more we experience Christ’s love the more real it becomes in our lives.
We trust in the fact that we are loved by God because He says so. We trust in the fact that we are loved by Christ because He died for us. We go through turbulent times in our lives which may cause us to doubt that love. We live by faith under the promise of His love and as we experience that love, we come to know more and more about that love. This love is then lived out in our relationship with others. Paul has written about the unity that now exists among all believers. This love must be practically lived out in our relationships with each other.
What then but the most magnificent answer possible? As this love grabs hold of us in our inner person, we may be filled up to all the fulness of God. We are filled to overflowing with His fullness. It is only as we experience the love of Christ in our lives and let it flow out to each other that the fullness of God truly reigns in our lives. Let that fullness of God, displayed forever in the love of Christ, reign in our lives! Indeed, let it pour down unimpeded by any barrier!! The entire first three chapters of Ephesians have been leading to this point. He will end this section with a doxology that ascribes praise to God before telling us how to live in light of His great love. We are empowered through His love.