And of His fulness have all we received, and grace for grace. John 1:16
I want to think about Your fulness today, Lord. I want to sit here and really know how full You are. What are You full of? What is the good of Your fulness? What is Your fulness? Is there anything in my comprehension or experiences that will allow me to grasp the nature and immensity of this statement that John is making? Actually, this is more than a statement of a fact; it is a timeless truth that affects the very heart of who I am.
One word can make all the difference. One word can be so rich. A thumb up or a thumb down could mean the life or death of a man. Just a “yes,” or just a “no” is enough to change the course of history. And understanding Your fulness, even just beginning to get a glimpse of Your fulness, could change me. Because Your fulness is there to benefit me. It’s there for each of us to receive. It’s there for us. And it’s all tied in with grace. But that’s more of the story. That’s more of the wonder.
So how do I find out what a word is? I suppose first I should look at the original meaning, especially if that word comes from another language, because sometimes other languages are richer in meaning than ours. And I need to think about what that word means to the original speaker and listeners. So I have to take the orignal culture or cultures into the picture here. So I have to take myself back in time with You and with John for a while. And I love this part. I’ve always wanted to walk with You. So here we go.
The Greek word for fulness comes from “pleroma.” I checked out a Greek/Hebrew word study on “fulness”, “pleroma” at http://www.faithsfoundations.com and would like to share some of their thoughts. “In the Hebrew as well as the Greek the word fullness means that which is completely filled with the presence of God and all His power, His riches, and His abundance. It is a filling to the point of overflow, complete saturation of not only His character but His abilities, His power, His authority and His agency. Totally and completely empowered in and through all He is.” Most things I know, even in their fulness have a limit. They may even come to the point of overflowing, but some day that overflow will run out. There’s an end to the deepest ocean. There’s always some ultimate limit. But in You, there are no limits. Your fulness is always to overflowing and it is always overflowing to each of us. And this fulness is every quality that is You. I really can’t explain it all except to say that everything I need at any moment is there, waiting for me, within Your fulness.
So, Lord, it’s really important that I understand what You have for me in Your fulness. Which means I have to dig a little deeper into Your Word. I have to look a little farther to find that treasure You buried for me. And this takes me back to the book of Ephesians. And Paul prays for fellow believers that of Your fulness we will receive the “spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of You,” that we would have true understanding, we would see the amazing hope that lies in our calling in You, that we would understand and experience the riches of the glory of all that we inherit from You now and into eternity, and that we would truly know and experience the “beyond every expectation-ness” of Your power to us and in us through knowing the awesomeness and reality of the power and dominion and work and position of You, Jesus. Wow! This is Who You Are! From the fulness of all of this and more of who You are, You fill everything. You fill all and You are just waiting to fill us to overflowing in You. You alone are the One who can complete us. Nothing else and no one else can.
But that’s not enough for Paul. Later in Ephesians he is compelled to pray again. From the fulness of Christ, of You, comes my strength and might in my “inner man.” From Your fulness is where the real me comes from and is made strong now and for eternity. From Your fulness is where I find You and You come to dwell in my heart by faith. From Your fulness is where, when You come to dwell in me as I empty myself of all that is not You and allow You to fill me, that I become rooted and grounded in the fulness of Your love. I experience the fulness of that love. And let me tell the world, there is no other love like Yours! In the fulness of who You are, I become able to comprehend, to really know and experience the immensity, the mind-baffling, inexplicable immensity, of Your love for me and for all people. And I am filled not only with personal knowledge, but as I surrender to Your filling, to You, I am filled with all that is You.
And this is the amazing part, that this fulness of everything wonderful that is in You and that is You, sweeps into my inner being, into my spirit, into my soul, into my heart. Straight from You, it overflows from Your fulness into me. And You do “exceedingly abundantly” above all my expectations and above any dream I ever had. And You work Your fulness into empty me. And You flow from me. And I become a vessel of Your glory and Your love and Your grace.
This is the grace upon grace, this is the rivers of grace flowing with rivers of grace flowing over that. It’s like a double river. Who has ever seen that? How could I ever deserve to be a vessel, a bearer of Your fulness, of every treasure that is You? But this is Your desire for me, for every one of us. And this is the whole point. This is what Paul leads up to in Ephesians 4. It’s all about You completely furnishing me to be all You created me to be. It’s all about You making me able to perform and participate in Your work. It’s all about You building up Your body. It’s all about You bringing us into unity with You and each other, bringing us into Your fulness, for real and forever. Wow!
Lord, I am so grateful for Your amazing fulness that is beyond words. And I am totally undeserving of all that You lavish on me. But I am so grateful that You created me to be filled with You and that You made a way for me to be filled with all Your fulness. I’m grateful that You showed me that I was empty and lost without You. I’m thankful beyond measure that Jesus alone can fill me and make me whole. And I am so eternally grateful that You lavish me in You and all that is Yours. I am fully Yours and You are fully mine, all because of the work You have done through Jesus Christ. Your fulness means everything to me. So, continue to fill me to overflowing like You. And let our overflow touch other lives around us so that Your body is continually being added to and others are continually experiencing Your fulness. And I can’t wait to worship and dance and sing together with each one when we stand before You. Can you even imagine the intensity of that day? To be in the middle of the fulness of Your fulness. All I can say is “Wow!” Thanks for bringing me into the experience of You.