By :Elder Enoch Ofori Jnr
“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,
“ Unto him [be] glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen” (Eph. 3:20-21).
The simple message of the scripture is that God has superabundant ability to fulfill all our needs beyond our expectations. Still, the message is ‘silently loud’ on our human frailty! While as humans we are woefully limited in our ability to perform, scripture has revealed God as the God who is able! With Him nothing is impossible nor too hard as evidenced by creation (Matt. 19:26; Jer. 32:17, 27).
And He’s willing to fulfill our prayer requests—even those at the thought level—because we are inherently helpless and can’t do a thing without Him (Ps 70:5; Isa. 41:14; John 15:5).
Even what we think we can do is nothing compared to His! Most often, it’s simply going round in circles with nothing to show for what we think we can do on our own.
Such was the situation in which Christ found Simon Peter at the Lake Gennesaret (Luke 5). As a thank you for having allowed Him to preach from his boat, the Lord said unto Peter, “Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught [catch]” (v. 4).
With an incredulous look but not wishing to appear discourteous, Peter answered: “Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless AT THY WORD I will let down the net. And when they had this done, they inclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake. And they beckoned unto [their] partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the ships, so that they began to sink” (vv. 5-7).
From NOTHING to ABUNDANCE at His Word, because He is “able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think”!
Another occasion for the display of Christ’s ability to perform beyond all expectations presented itself when He was ‘saddled’ with the ‘problem’ of feeding a multitude of people in upwards of five thousand! He had been preaching to the multitude all day and as the evening approached, “the disciples came unto Him, and said, This is a desert place, and now the time is far passed: Send them away, that they may go into the country round about, and into the villages, and buy themselves bread: for they have nothing to eat” (Mark 6:35-36).
According to Matthew’s account, Christ’s immediate reply was that “They need not depart; give ye them to eat” (Matt. 14:16). In John’s account, He then asked Philip: “Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat? And this he said to prove him: for He himself knew what he would do. Philip answered Him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little” (vv. 5-7).
Two hundred pennies or denari (Greek) was the combined amount of eight months’ wages and even this, Philip emphasized, would not be enough to feed five thousand people and above. Philip was certain it was not possible to feed five thousand hungry people in a desert place and thus failed the Master’s test. But all along He knew what He would do!
The same lack of faith was evident in disciple Andrew when he ventured, “ [Sir] There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?” (vv. 8-9). In other words, with so many to feed, even what we have is nothing to write home about!
Jesus would soon prove that He is the God Who is able! It was not a problem beyond Him. (see Deut. 8:2-3). All the while, He knew what He would do. Only He must be obeyed first:
“And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand.
“ And Jesus took the loaves; and when He had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would.
“ When they were filled, He said unto His disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost.
“ Therefore they gathered [them] together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten” (vv. 10-13).
Jesus Christ, the God Who is Able, turned little into abundance! The lesson is that He is able to do all that we can’t do by ourselves, and so even when we don’t understand how He will do it, we must still believe and obey Him!
Our God of Ability alone is the One able to discern and meet whatever needs we might have. Because:
1. He has the resources: “My God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus (Php. 4:19).
2. He has the strength: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Php. 4:13). So though we lack strength in ourselves, we can certainly do all things through Christ, our Strength (1 Sam. 15:29).
3. He wants our joy to be full: “And in that day ye shall ask Me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in My name, He will give it to you. Hitherto have ye asked nothing in My name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full” (John 16:23-24).
But more important, our God has the POWER to fulfill our requests—and that power is not far off! He does all we ask “according to the power that worketh in us” which is Christ, “the Wisdom and Power of God”, indwelling us as the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 1:24; Col. 1:27; Gal. 4:6).
When Christ performed the impossible miracles of abundance, He was close to the disciples. Now He’s closer—in our hearts!
By using His Son’s superabundant power in us to do “exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think” God is glorified in the Church through Jesus Christ in our present age as in “all ages world without end” (Eph. 3:21). Amen!
The challenge for you today as a modern-day believer is, Will you trust the Lord Jesus to meet all your needs? Don’t take into account your seemingly hopeless situation. Look at it from God’s perspective. There’s nothing too hard for Him, and He is willing and able to perform all your requests . The ancient saints relied on Him on and were not put to shame (Ps. 34:5). He has not changed (Mal. 3:6; Heb. 13:8). He does not want you to come to shame (Rom. 10:11); on the contrary, He wants your joy to be full!
So trust Him always and keep on praying. The power for your miracle is already within you as a Spirit-anointed child of God; it is “the first installment of everything he will give us” (2 Cor. 1:21-22 NLT). So let your faith soar; keep trusting Him, keep praying, and keep praising Him in acknowledgement of the provision He has made for the fulfillment of all your requests through Jesus His Son! Amen!