“Now to him who can do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.”
Explanation and Commentary on Ephesians 3:20
Paul has been writing of the power of God to make us able to grasp the width and depth of his love. He writes here of greatness of the ability of God to strengthen us for comprehension of all that he is, and the power of his love that dwells in us. He promises to pray for them to be strengthened out of the vast stores of the power of God.
The language is soaring and beautiful, but also practical. The love of God is supernatural, and so the love that we are called to bear towards others is the same love and just as supernatural. It simply cannot be understood apart from God’s help, and it certainly cannot be acted upon apart from God. But God can do “immeasurably more” by his power. Therefore, Paul is keen to see that God gets all the glory for this, which is his right (Eph 3:21).
Breaking Down the Key Parts of Ephesians 3:20
#1 “Now to him who is able…”
God is able. There is nothing that he cannot do if it is His will to do so. He created all things. He created the laws of nature and can break them at will. He holds the universe in the palm of his hand. He is sovereign and powerful. He is the one who saved us, adopted us, and calls us to pray to him.
#2 “…to do immeasurably more than all we ask,”
How much more is God capable of than we even know to ask? Immeasurably more. It cannot be measured. Paul expected the Ephesians to understand that God’s answer to prayer never hinges on his ability, but rather, his will. Anything we pray according to God’s will shall be done (1 Jn 5:14) because God is able.
#3 “or imagine,”
The Spirit prays for us for the things we don’t even know to pray for (Ro 8:26). We don’t have the capacity to know what all to be asking for. We cannot imagine it. God surely answers all these prayers because his Spirit shares his mind and will (1 Cor 2:11).
#4 “according to his power…”
God is able, because of his great and mighty power. Paul’s prayer is that out of God’s “glorious riches” they would be strengthened. There is no limit to God’s power, so there is no limit to his ability to strengthen us.
#5 “…that is at work within us.”
This power of God for our strengthening is already at work in us. His Spirit is responsible for our regeneration. His Holy Spirit has made us into a new creation (2 Cor 5:17). We already have God’s power within. We must walk by the Spirit (Gal 5:16). Though the power of God is in us, some continue to foolishly walk by the flesh.
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Biblical Translations of Ephesians 3:20
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.
Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.
Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us.
Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.
Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.
Natalie Regoli is a child of God, devoted wife, and mother of two boys. She has a Master's Degree in Law from The University of Texas. Natalie has been published in several national journals and has been practicing law for 18 years.