Ephesians
Chapter 4

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1 I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called,

2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;

3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;

5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism,

6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.

8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.

9 (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?

10 He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)

11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:

14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:

16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

17 This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind,

18 Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart:

19 Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.

20 But ye have not so learned Christ;

21 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus:

22 That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;

23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;

24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.

25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.

26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:

27 Neither give place to the devil.

28 Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.

29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.

30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.

31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:

32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.

Commentary for Ephesians 4

Exhortations to mutual forbearance and union. (1-6) To a due use of spiritual gifts and graces. (7-16) To purity and holiness. (17-24) And to take heed of the sins practised among the heathen. (25-32)1-6 Nothing is pressed more earnestly in the Scriptures, than to walk as becomes those called to Christ's kingdom and glory. By lowliness, understand humility, which is opposed to pride. By meekness, that excellent disposition of soul, which makes men unwilling to provoke, and not easily to be provoked or offended. We find much in ourselves for which we can hardly forgive ourselves; therefore we must not be surprised if we find in others that which we think it hard to forgive. There is one Christ in whom all believers hope, and one heaven they are all hoping for; therefore they should be of one heart. They had all one faith, as to its object, Author, nature, and power. They all believed the same as to the great truths of religion; they had all been admitted into the church by one baptism, with water, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, as the sign of regeneration. In all believers God the Father dwells, as in his holy temple, by his Spirit and special grace.

7-16 Unto every believer is given some gift of grace, for their mutual help. All is given as seems best to Christ to bestow upon every one. He received for them, that he might give to them, a large measure of gifts and graces; particularly the gift of the Holy Ghost. Not a mere head knowledge, or bare acknowledging Christ to be the Son of God, but such as brings trust and obedience. There is a fulness in Christ, and a measure of that fulness given in the counsel of God to every believer; but we never come to the perfect measure till we come to heaven. God's children are growing, as long as they are in this world; and the Christian's growth tends to the glory of Christ. The more a man finds himself drawn out to improve in his station, and according to his measure, all that he has received, to the spiritual good of others, he may the more certainly believe that he has the grace of sincere love and charity rooted in his heart.

17-24 The apostle charged the Ephesians in the name and by the authority of the Lord Jesus, that having professed the gospel, they should not be as the unconverted Gentiles, who walked in vain fancies and carnal affections. Do not men, on every side, walk in the vanity of their minds? Must not we then urge the distinction between real and nominal Christians? They were void of all saving knowledge; they sat in darkness, and loved it rather than light. They had a dislike and hatred to a life of holiness, which is not only the way of life God requires and approves, and by which we live to him, but which has some likeness to God himself in his purity, righteousness, truth, and goodness. The truth of Christ appears in its beauty and power, when it appears as in Jesus. The corrupt nature is called a man; like the human body, it is of divers parts, supporting and strengthening one another. Sinful desires are deceitful lusts; they promise men happiness, but render them more miserable; and bring them to destruction, if not subdued and mortified. These therefore must be put off, as an old garment, a filthy garment; they must be subdued and mortified. But it is not enough to shake off corrupt principles; we must have gracious ones. By the new man, is meant the new nature, the new creature, directed by a new principle, even regenerating grace, enabling a man to lead a new life of righteousness and holiness. This is created, or brought forth by God's almighty power.

25-28 Notice the particulars wherewith we should adorn our Christian profession. Take heed of every thing contrary to truth. No longer flatter or deceive others. God's people are children who will not lie, who dare not lie, who hate and abhor lying. Take heed of anger and ungoverned passions. If there is just occasion to express displeasure at what is wrong, and to reprove, see that it be without sin. We give place to the devil, when the first motions of sin are not grievous to our souls; when we consent to them; and when we repeat an evil deed. This teaches that as sin, if yielded unto, lets in the devil upon us, we are to resist it, keeping from all appearance of evil. Idleness makes thieves. Those who will not work, expose themselves to temptations to steal. Men ought to be industrious, that they may do some good, and that they may be kept from temptation. They must labour, not only that they may live honestly, but that they may have to give to the wants of others. What then must we think of those called Christians, who grow rich by fraud, oppression, and deceitful practices! Alms, to be accepted of God, must not be gained by unrighteousness and robbery, but by honesty and industry. God hates robbery for burnt-offerings.

29-32 Filthy words proceed from corruption in the speaker, and they corrupt the minds and manners of those who hear them: Christians should beware of all such discourse. It is the duty of Christians to seek, by the blessing of God, to bring persons to think seriously, and to encourage and warn believers by their conversation. Be ye kind one to another. This sets forth the principle of love in the heart, and the outward expression of it, in a humble, courteous behaviour. Mark how God's forgiveness causes us to forgive. God forgives us, though we had no cause to sin against him. We must forgive, as he has forgiven us. All lying, and corrupt communications, that stir up evil desires and lusts, grieve the Spirit of God. Corrupt passions of bitterness, wrath, anger, clamour, evil-speaking, and malice, grieve the Holy Spirit. Provoke not the holy, blessed Spirit of God to withdraw his presence and his gracious influences. The body will be redeemed from the power of the grave at the resurrection day. Wherever that blessed Spirit dwells as a Sanctifier, he is the earnest of all the joys and glories of that redemption day; and we should be undone, should God take away his Holy Spirit from us.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Ephesians 4

  • Bookreadingismything
    I learned this the hard way. Now I watch what I say, thinking with regret and remorse about the unkind things I said in the past.
  • Steve morrow
    ACTS 20:24 BUT NONE OF THESE THINGS MOVE ME NEITHER COUNT I MY LIFE DEAR UNTO MYSELF SO THAT I MIGHT FINISH MY COURSE WITH JOY AND THE MINISTRY WHICH I HAVE RECEIVED OF THE LORD JESUS TO TESTIFY THE GOSPEL OF THE GRACE OF GOD COLOSSIANS 1:6 WHICH IS COME UNTO YOU AS IT IS IN ALL THE WORLD AND BRINGETH FORTH FRUIT AS IT DOTH ALSO IN YOU SINCE THE DAY YOU HEARD OF IT AND KNEW THE GRACE OF GOD IN TRUTH TITUS 2:11 FOR THE GRACE OF GOD THAT BRINGETH SALVATION HATH APPEARED UNTO ALL MEN --2:12-- TEACHING US -- THAT DENYING UNGODLINESS AND WORLDLY LUSTS WE SHOULD LIVE SOBERLY RIGHTEOUSLY AND GODLY IN THIS PRESENT WORLD PSALM 118:8 IT IS BETTER TO TRUST IN THE LORD THAN TO PUT YOUR CONFIDENCE IN MAN PSALM 108:12 GIVE US HELP FROM TROUBLE --- FOR VAIN IS THE HELP OF MAN
  • Elaine Maxine Howell
    It s difficult to minister to others, when you are not spiritually feeding nor standing firmly on the foundation of God s Word . Message: The Holy Bible is truly the Word of God, sealed and delivered with the entirety of His existence. The Holy Bible is a an effective resource that allows us to gain knowledge by firmly grounding ourselves in the Word of God, by reading and comprehending God s law. Therefore, continue to grow in knowledge, love, faith, and harmony, trusting and believing that the Lord is your foundation, that will never blemish or crumble. Because He lives, His Word feeds me. Because He lives, His Love surrounds me. Because He lives, His Blood covers me. Because He lives, His Grace reaches me. Because He lives, His Mercy saved me. Because He lives, His Strength protects me. Because He lives, I Live. Go in peace my brothers and sisters in Christ and know that He is near. Amen Elaine Maxine Howell Teacher Author God Bless :-
  • Steve morrow
    1 CORINTHIANS 3:9 FOR WE ARE --- LABORERES --- TOGETHER WITH GOD YOU ARE GODS HUSBANDRY YOU ARE GODS BUILDING --3:10-- ACCORDING TO THE GRACE OF GOD WHICH IS GIVEN UNTO ME AS A WISE MASTERBUILDER I HAVE LAID THE FOUNDATION AND ANOTHER BUILDETH THEREON BUT LET EVREY MAN TAKE HEED HOW HE BUILDETH THEREUPON --3:11-- FOR OTHER FOUNDATION CAN NO MAN LAY THAN THAT IS LAID WHICH IS JESUS CHRIST PROVERBS 24:3 THROUGH WISDOM IS AN HOUSE BUILDED AND BY UNDERSTANDING IT IS ESTABLISHED --24:5-- A WISE MAN IS STRONG YEA A MAN OF KNOWLEDGE INCREASETH STRENGTH 2 CORINTHIANS 12:9 AND HE SAID UNTO ME MY GRACE IS SUFFICIENT FOR THEE --- FOR MY STRENGTH --- IS MADE PERFECT IN WEAKNESS --- MOST GLADLY THEREFORE WILL I RATHER GLORY IN MY INFIRMITIES THAT THE POWER OF CHRIST MAY REST UPON ME ECCLESIASTES 8:4 WHERE THE WORD OF A KING IS THERE IS POWER AND WHO MAY SAY UNTO HIM WHAT DOEST THOU 1 CORINTHIANS 1:24 BUT UNTO THEM WHICH ARE CALLED BOTH JEWS AND GREEKS CHRIST THE POWER OF GOD AND THE WISDOM OF GOD ACTS 20:32 AND NOW BRETHREN I COMMEND YOU TO GOD AND TO THE WORD OF HIS GRACE WHICH IS ABLE TO BUILD YOU UP AND TO GIVE YOU AN INHERITANCE AMONG ALL THEM WHICH ARE SANCTIFIED
  • Teena
    Do not speak down to people. Do not be quick to point out the faults and short comings of others, they already know them. Look for the positive and speak on that, to allow them to see goodness and hope in a situation.
  • BSP
    Verse 24: We must continue to strive to put on the new person or personality. We want to adjust our way of thinking so that we please Jehovah God.
  • Peter A. Okebukola
    Eternal entreaties- Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.

  • A disciple
    (17-19) Many seem to believe that everything is automatically done for us the moment we become a Christian. While we have confessed our sins to God and repented with the most solemn and sincere intentions, and have received forgiveness and a new start in life, no longer under sin's dominion and control over us; yet there is much still in us that is not fit for God's presence and fellowship.

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Bible Trivia

Which statement is NOT part of Paul's teaching about unity?
  • One hope to which believers are called
  • One Spirit
  • One baptism
  • One way to build up the body of Christ