For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for you Gentiles . . . [If that ordering of the grace of God has come to your knowledge, which was given to me for you, How by revelation the secret was made clear to me, as I said before in a short letter, By the reading of which you will be clear about my knowledge of the secret of Christ; Which in other generations was not given to the sons of men, but the revelation of it has now been made to his holy Apostles and prophets in the Spirit; Which is that the Gentiles have a part in the heritage, and in the same body, and in the same hope in Christ through the good news, Of which I was made a preacher, through that grace of God which was given to me in the measure of the working of his power. To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, was this grace given, so that I might make clear to the Gentiles the good news of the unending wealth of Christ: And make all men see what is the ordering of the secret which from the first has been kept in God who made all things; So that now to the rulers and the authorities in the heavens might be made clear through the church the wide-shining wisdom of God, Which is seen in his eternal purpose in Christ Jesus our Lord: By whom we come near to God without fear through faith in him.] For this reason it is my prayer that you may not become feeble because of my troubles for you, which are your glory. For this cause I go down on my knees before the Father,Ephesians 3:1-14
I chose the BBE version to show the wider picture and the connections, but I prefer to use the NLT for Eph 3:2-4. It makes it more comprehensible I feel. The BBE loses the sense somehow.
assuming, (by the way,)
that you know God gave me
the special responsibility
of extending His grace
to you Gentiles. . .
As I briefly wrote earlier,
God Himself revealed
His mysterious plan
to me. . .
As you read what I have written,
you will understand
into this plan
Paul indeed was a prisoner because he was the apostle to the Gentiles. God had a mission for him which was to take the Good News of the Gospel to those on the other side of the dividing wall. (Bible Gem 643–645). Paul says, “God revealed His “mystery” to me” and that’s why he was in prison. He truly was a prisoner of Christ Jesus for the Gentiles. The anger that his sharing Jewish things with the Gentiles stirred up in Ephesus brought the wrath of Judaism down on his head. Paul saw clearly that God wanted the Gentiles to be included in the promise and set about taking the gospel to them. He saw clearly the nature of the promise and its significance to all, not just the Jews.
Note the difference between “as I said before in a short letter” and “as I briefly wrote earlier“. The two translations sum up the options as to what Paul means. Did he write an early letter to the Ephesians as some suppose? Or did he mean what he wrote earlier (above) in this letter to the Ephesians? I won’t dwell on this point as it is minor and we frankly don’t know exactly what it refers to. There is a lot of conjecture without hard facts. You work out what you think it means.
But what is clear is that Paul’s conviction that he is the apostle to the Gentiles is what has landed him in prison. And for this cause, namely taking the Gospel to the Gentiles, he is constantly on his knees in prayer.
You cannot burn-out if you’ve never been on fire! Burn with Gods passion!Rick Godwin
To get the best OUT of yourself, you must discover the best IN yourself!Rick Godwin
True confidence doesn’t come from perfection, it doesn’t come from having no flaws. True confidence comes from knowing that God is with you.Joyce Meyer