In this section of Ephesians, Paul offers a prayer for the church but, before he does, he goes on a lengthy digression. Just as he was about to pray, he took time to reflect on his call to ministry. He did that because as he wrote this letter he was in prison. His imprisonment, no doubt, was a cause for concern among the believers in Ephesus. Is the Gospel failing? Did Paul do something wrong? Is the Church endangered? Paul lets them (and us) know that it is actually just the opposite. Not only is God’s Master Plan not failing, it is succeeding. Paul is a prisoner not of the Roman authorities but of Jesus Christ who is guiding his ministry and destiny. By God’s grace he takes the Gospel to Gentiles and helps believers understand the mystery of God’s plan that, up until Jesus came, was unknown to previous generations. He then goes on to pray that the believers would experience God’s power, love, and filling presence.
Paul’s message in Ephesians 3 helps us understand that God’s plan is unfailing; nothing could or will cause it to be undone. It also helps us see that difficulties and opposition to the Gospel are not unexpected; God is sovereign over all things. Finally, we see that God’s plan comes with God’s provision; His power, love, and presence will provide all we need to walk in faithfulness and obedience to Him.