And pray for me, too. Ask God to give me the right words so I can boldly explain God’s mysterious plan that the Good News is for Jews and Gentiles alike. I am in chains now, still preaching this message as God’s ambassador. So pray that I will keep on speaking boldly for Him, as I should.Ephesians 6:19-20
Paul now asks for prayer cover for himself. Remember he is in chains for the Gospel and for the cause he has been proclaiming. These things we have been reading are not idle words, they have been lived out by Paul in his daily life. He lives constantly with the threat of the enemy aligned against him. But he doesn’t flinch when under attack. All of the comments Paul makes about spiritual warfare and rejoicing in difficulty are on the basis of experience. In the midst of that kind of experience what does Paul say? “Pray God to give me the right words to boldly explain His mysterious plan, the Good News for Jews and Gentiles.” In all of this affliction, it doesn’t make a scrap of difference to Paul’s life goal. He is unswerving in his commitment to the cause. Note it is the same cause he has been talking about since the beginning of the letter (and all his other letters too). The mysterious plan is the same mystery of the Gospel. The Good News of this Gospel of God is still to be preached to the Jew first and then to the non-Jews.
What makes Paul so set in his dedication to what he feels to be his life’s work? Take some time to think about it. The answer may well help you to remain steadfast. Pause in this gem and take time to ponder it. I won’t make you wait until the next Gem for “the answer”. You can look below when you are ready. But if you want to take time to think about it for yourself before you read further, then do that,.
I think there are some some keys to Paul’s dedication in what we have looked at already through the Gems.
Paul’s request. Look at what Paul asks God for. Phil 3:10 [Be careful what you ask God for]:
- a) That I might know Him
- b) That I might know the power of His resurrection
- c) That I might know the fellowship of sufferings
God’s assigned task for him – what he told the Ephesian elders:
- a) That he was to preach the Gospel to the Gentiles.
- b) That he would suffer
Paul’s feelings of indebtedness – he feels he betrayed God so much that now he must make it up to Him. Paul does not consider himself worthy of being the Lord’s servant for the way he persecuted the church.
Paul is committed to the task given to him by God. He presses on no matter what the cost, willing to die for the sake of the Gospel. Now that is commitment. This is not the normal kind of pray for someone. Paul is not listing the hard things he is struggling with and asking to be released from them. To seek prayer support for an easier time; relief from his problems and an easy life. In fact he is asking for the courage and boldness to give it his all. Now that is impressive.
If you set a goal you ALREADY know how to accomplish it probably isn’t big enough. Faith is moving ahead before knowing how.Rick Warren
Remember, you are made strong by the difficulties you FACE, not by those you EVADE!Rick Godwin
A faith that hasn’t been tested, can’t be trusted.Anon