Löhe on Ephesians 3:17

Smiling Family Posing in FieldI pray that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith and that you, may be rooted and established in love. (Eph 3:17 NIV)

The apostle prays to the Lord to be gracious to the Ephesians and that he may help them to comprehend the divine love that reaches all people and stretches across the globe and is made manifest in the edification and expansion of the Church. He prays further that Christ may dwell in them and that they may be rooted in his inexpressible love and goodness. To reach this stage of edification and sanctification Christians must haven open hearts for Christ and willingly be his temple and holy dwelling place. The Lord must enter in and take over ownership there. To experience this indwelling of Christ you progress to a high level of spirituality and sanctification. Christ must rule in us, so that we truly become spiritually orientated and focused in the true sense. This teaching of church edification and expansion, concerning the width and breadth, the height and depth of Christ’s revealed mercy is not just plain milk for infants, but rather strong stuff for mature Christians. If people don’t understand this, then its most often due to an ignorance concerning the high issues of Church matters and spirituals things. For those however who begin to grasp these ecclesial issues, will start praising the power and glory of him, who works in us far beyond our asking and understanding to make us realize a bit of his most blessed missional deeds working towards the salvation of humanity. All tribes and nations are blessed in Jesus Christ by the building and outreach of his most holy and blessed Church. All eons and eras are full of his honor and glory because he is completing and fulfilling the wonderful creation and expansion of his Church from eternity to eternity. He is edifying his elect from all people and times  with his divine perfection.

Dear heavenly Father! Grant us seeing eyes, that we would recognize the glory of your kingdom and become strong in the inner being by your Holy Spirit. Turn our mind and senses from the vain and passing to rather be focused on your most holy and lasting word. Empower us for all good work and create in us, whatever pleases you. Through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen. (H. Greiner)

All people that on earth do dwell, Sing to the Lord with cheerful voice. Him serve with fear, His praise forth tell; Come ye before Him and rejoice.

The Lord, ye know, is God indeed; Without our aid He did us make; We are His folk, He doth us feed, And for His sheep He doth us take.

O enter then His gates with praise; Approach with joy His courts unto; Praise, laud, and bless His Name always, For it is seemly so to do.

For why? the Lord our God is good; His mercy is for ever sure; His truth at all times firmly stood, And shall from age to age endure.

To Father, Son and Holy Ghost, The God Whom Heaven and earth adore, From men and from the angel host Be praise and glory evermore. (William Kethe 1593)

This is a rather free translation of Wilhelm Löhe’s devotion for Wednesday after the sixteenth Sunday after the high holiday and festival of the Holy Trinity. It is found on Pg. 330 in Lob sei Dir ewig, o Jesu!   (Eternal Praise to you o Jesus!) edited by A. Schuster and published in the Freimund Verlag, Neuendettelsau 1949.

About Wilhelm Weber

Pastor at the Old Latin School in the Lutherstadt Wittenberg
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