“Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ;”
King James Version (KJV)
6:5 Your masters according to the flesh - According to the present state of things: afterward the servant is free from his master. With fear and trembling - A proverbial expression, implying the utmost care and diligence. In singleness of heart - With a single eye to the providence and will of God.
Eph 6:5 Servants. The term does not refer so much to hired servants, as slaves, of whom there were many millions in the Roman Empire at that time. These were of all races, prisoners taken in war, or their children. Christianity did not violently destroy this relation, but regulated, mitigated and undermined it by introducing a new element into human life which would destroy it. Masters according to the flesh. Earthly masters whose dominion will go no farther than this world. With fear and trembling. Not for fear of punishment, but for fear that the service is not done right. In singleness of your heart, as unto Christ. Christ will see and reward your fidelity to duty, even if an earthly master does not.