Tuesday, 30 August 2016
…to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3:21
The words “to Him” are speaking, as in the previous verse, about God the Father who has orchestrated all things according to His wisdom for the redemption of mankind. It is He who has done, exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us” (verse 20), and to whom belongs “the glory in the church.”
All credit is given to God in the church concerning our redemption and eternal status where we will live in His presence. No credit can be taken for our entry into this exalted and glorious edifice, and no credit can be taken for our position within it. God has appointed all things according to His wisdom, and we are merely the recipients of this marvelous grace which has come “by Christ Jesus.” The word “by” is arguably better rendered as “in.” The work has been done by Him, and we are in Him now as members of the church.
And because we are members of this body who are in Him, we shall exalt and give glory to God for “all generations, forever and ever.” Here Paul has invented a phrase which attempts, failingly, to explain the eternal state that we have been brought into. Albert Barnes says that, “There is a richness and amplification of language here which shows that his heart was full of the subject, and that it was difficult to find words to express his conceptions. It means, in the strongest sense, forever.”
A literal translation would be “…unto all the generations of the age of the ages” (Vincent’s Word Studies). God’s plan had a beginning in the stream of time, but there shall be no end to it. The redeemed of the Lord shall walk in His presence for time without end, ever searching out the manifold wisdom and glory of God. It is the wondrous hope and expectation that we now possess because of the work of God in Christ.
Life application: If you are of the redeemed of the Lord, then praise Him! You will be doing it for all eternity, and so you might as well get started with that now. Be pleased to give God all the credit He is due for the marvelous gift of eternal life. Be pleased to hail the name of Jesus!
Heavenly Father, you have promised that Your redeemed will walk in Your presence unto all generations, and even unto the age of the ages. Though our lives had a moment when we came into existence, there will never be a time when this life will end. Because of Jesus, You have ordained that we will walk in Your glory and seek out Your splendor forever. As this is so, help us to start the praises now. Let us hail You because of the wonderful work You have wrought in order to bring us back to Yourself. Glory to you in the highest! Amen.