Verse for today – “so that the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known through the church to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly places (Eph. 3:10).”
When I was young dad asked for my help. I believe his words were, “You might want to see this, and you might be able to help; one of our milking cows is having trouble with her baby.” I threw on my high boots and headed for the barn in pursuit of dad, not knowing what to expect. When we arrived at the barnyard, right beside our pond, I saw a medium sized black and white (Holstein) cow lying on her side; nothing much seemed to be happening. Dad assured me she was in pain and that the trouble was the baby would not come out.
To my amazement, dad reached inside of mama cow and after some time he pulled out a small baby-calf’s foot. He said, “Here, hold this and do not let go; he is slippery!” My thought was, “How did you know that was in there… and ARE YOU CRAZY?!” But I grabbed the foot and held on for dear life. Dad quickly returned with a strong rope, which he tied to the calf’s leg. After what seemed like hours of cold and hard work, and aching muscles (mine and I think even dad’s), out came a beautiful, healthy baby calf. Mama cow turned around and started licking him. For me… well, I was astonished and suddenly saw my father in a completely new way.
I realize this illustration is limited, but sometimes you need to see things to understand them; sometimes words and thoughts alone will not do. Getting back to Ephesians, how can God possibly bring anything good out of the sinfulness of man? How can He ever resolve mankind’s rebellion without force? How can a loving God win in a world filled with hate? The angels want to know! Other spiritual beings in the heavenly places want to know! The Bible tells us in 1 Peter 1:12 that these are, “things into which angels long to look.” And today’s verse tells us that by observing the church, these rulers and authorities in the heavenly places better understand the “manifold (many colored) wisdom” of God. God’s mystery—salvation, forgiveness, and unity through the love and sacrifice of Christ—has produced such a beautiful church. The universe is amazed! God’s wisdom, glory, and love are on display!
As you will see in the coming verses, Paul is beginning to worship God, AND to lead us in worship. First, he will take us a little deeper into God’s plan and pray for our growth and understanding (Paul is such a thorough writer). But by the end of the chapter, we will be praising our Maker for His incredible plan, for His wisdom, and for ALL that HE has done.