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

  • Pastor Frensley on Ephesians 4:1
    Eph 4:1What does the word vocation mean in this verse?
  • Mishael on Discipleship - in Reply on Ephesians 4:1
    Jesus said to His Disciples: Come. Follow Me.

    For all those men it meant giving up everything. Peter was married and had children. Matthew was a prosperous tax collector.

    Not many people in 2020 want to do that. We're not used to giving up anything. Look how we handle loss due to Co-vid.

    If our Churches don't reopen then everyone needs to support a radio, tv, or streaming ministry. God sees. It's all wide open.

    We are to follow Jesus. He can't teach us on the road like he did His disciples. (On job training)

    But we've Got our Bibles! We are to study to show ourselves approved unto God. Read Whole Books at a time. Buy a concordance to find things faster.

    Concentrate on how to talk with people about their sins: have you ever told a lie? Stolen something? Coveted your neighbors riding lawn mower? His house? His wife?

    If we even break one commandment, we are guilty of all 10. Sin is supposed to sting like ant bites.

    If you just get a few people saved; you have followed the Master, Jesus.

    Paul was a prisoner because he was a servant of the Lord. Walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called. They had been called to a glorious calling, as he had shown in chapter 3. The Christian has been called to the highest calling with which man has ever been honored.

    Pray to the Lord of the Harvest. To be brought to "divine appointments". Ask the Lord to allow angelic protection and support.

    Pray before you go and pray for everyone you met or prayed for.

    You may meet A "disciple" want to be. Meet them at McDonalds or Taco Bell till you get to know them better. Invite them to church.

    It's good to take a baby lamb to a Pastor/ Shepherd.

    Ask the Holy Spirit to bless your evangelizing work. Thank Him for HELPing you recall scriptures.
  • Jesse - in Reply on Ephesians 4:1
    Pastor, you can substitute the vocation with calling. Paul is giving instruction and the call to the Gentiles.

    He says that you walk worthy of the vocation, or calling, wherewith you are called. None of us are worthy from a human standpoint. But the Greek word for worthy means balanced, or equal. You go down to the marketplace and put an item on one of the balances, and you would put money on the other side until it equals out. And that's how much the item is worth, and that's how much you pay for it in the marketplace.

    He's saying live worthy of your calling. This is important for Gentiles. It's our problem more so than the Jews. The Jewish people are already religiously disciplined. Their problem is that they cannot let go of the old religious discipline to function in the newness of the Spirit of God. But they're still disciplined!

    When a Gentile gets saved, the Gentile comes into the church and he only has one focus. I got saved, I'm going to heaven, and I'm spending some fellowship with my brothers and sisters. But Paul says wait a minute, you have to come out of paganism. You can't just bring that into the church and make everything the same.

    So the Gentile has a problem. We have to come out of the pagan lifestyle, out of the old life that we used to live, and walk in a whole new life. Many people are taught that you receive Jesus and you take Him with you as you continue on in your life, instead of receiving Christ and becoming a new creation, leaving off from the old and walking in the new.

    Some in the ministry don't even understand that. They bring paganism, the lifestyle of the Gentiles into the church because the Gentiles won't come unless we have things there for them that they used to have before. Many churches have to bring something into the church in order to keep people entertained, or else they get bored. So they bring the things of the world into the church to attract the Gentile. They won't tell you to repent and leave it behind!
  • Mishael on COLORS ANCESTRY on Ephesians 4:30
    Just a short addition to why people look different from each other.

    God moulded Adam from dust. If you look at dust under a microscope, there are all colors in the dust.

    Adam, in Hebrew, translates as RED. His color was reddish. I am NOT saying Adam was Native American.

    People these days are the color of their ancestors.

    We don't need to get drawn away by ideas that we need to have white hair like wool, as describes Jesus in Revelation 1.

    Who do we know that LIES continually and is called the Father of Lies in the Bible.

    Satan has used this against mankind since the beginning.

    Look at our society, even planet wide: fighting and killing others who are different from us. It has to stop. Be happy to be a child of God; who accepts us by way of the BLOOD of JESUS.

    Doesn't it make practical sense that if there are 400 hundred (I'm guessing) varieties of roses.... that the same thing happens for humans too ?

    I don't make this stuff up. I PRAY and sit before God, till the answer comes. He doesn't tell me private information ever!

    He cares deeply what people are going through.

    Look at Creation's colors! More beautiful than anything humans can attempt to copy.

    Stop and get before the Lord and ask Him yourself. God called His creation VERY GOOD. Why can't we believe what HE says?
  • Ed Robinson on Ephesians 4:30
    In my Church we are taught that you can lose your salvation, but others say you can't. What is your opinion? The way that reads it seems my Church is correct.
  • Chris - in Reply on Ephesians 4:30
    Page 3.

    I've mentioned the above, not for any other reason but to emphasize that what man sees is not always what God sees. If your pastor/elder or anyone teaches that the saving work of God in a person, through His only Begotten Son, can also make allowance for error in God's election or if the 'saved' person chooses to reject Christ later on, then that can only have merit, if we look at a believer's standing through the eyes of man. Man sees a believer who turns his back to God (i.e. we first see him as a 'productive' Christian & now one living entirely in the flesh), then we say that person has lost his salvation, destined for Hell. God's view is entirely different. Please take time to read Romans 8, & especially focus on verses 29-39 to understand that God makes no mistakes & when we are truly His, we won't even contemplate departing from His great Love & our most Holy Faith.
  • Chris - in Reply on Ephesians 4:30
    Page 2.

    And it is the reality of the Holy Spirit's indwelling in our lives that enables us in bringing forth all the Fruit, all of the Graces of Christ, in us for the blessing of many. This indwelling is not just to give us a 'nice feeling' of being loved & blessed by God, but also to give us the power to live a victorious life, of endurance & even to martyrdom. And so when Mt 10:22, Rev 3:5 & others, speak of endurance & overcoming to the end, we know that this is the final test of the worth of our salvation experience. All who were martyred: the apostles (except John), Polycarp, Wycliffe, Huss, Tyndale, Bonhoeffer, Elliott & his four friends with him, & countless more through the ages, all demonstrated the reality of their salvation & the cost to love the Lord to the end. When I read that many of them who were put to the burning stake, recited Psalm 51 for focus & strength during that walk to their death, I'm deeply moved by their singular thought to confess any known sin that would impede their abundant entrance into the Lord's presence rather than to the torment that awaited them. And so I ask myself: Would I be able to do the same? I believe that the answer to that is found in the Word: YES, we who are saved will have the Spirit's fortitude to stand confidently. (Acts 7:55.56) shows us Stephen's vision that strengthened him to accept death courageously. (onto Page 3).
  • Chris - in Reply on Ephesians 4:30
    Page 1.

    Ed. From my reading of the Scriptures on this matter, I believe that a Christian cannot lose his/her salvation. However, rather than enter debate over this, I always ask the simple question: what is a Christian according to the Bible? This question on the surface may not require too much thought as one could quite simply say, that a Christian is one who has demonstrated faith in the finished Work of Christ on the Cross & has been forgiven on that basis. This statement alone sets him apart from any other religion or philosophy.

    Yet, that person & those around him will generally accept this person as a Christian, but we see that there are checks on the road we travel on, to examine the authenticity of that salvation. So, what I see is that how we look at a claim to be a Christian is not necessarily how God looks at it. We see only as a man sees: a baptism, a changed life, hunger for God & the Word, ministry, evidence of apparent spiritual fruit/gifts, etc. & we praise God for such a life & we are then convinced. Or is being a Christian more than this? Something that most of us have never been tested on are: the matter of endurance, finishing the race, overcoming Satan & possibly martyrdom. These may not be observable traits to us now, but these (& taking the mark of the beast, as Bob pointed out), are what make up the full requirements for being a true follower of Christ. And please note that I'm not adding anything extra to our salvation, but to show that our 'true' salvation also encompasses these other aspects that may only be provable at our journey's end. (onto Page 2).
  • Mishael - in Reply on Ephesians 4:30
    Comment:

    Yes there is. No person who has the Holy Spirit in dwelling, can call Jesus accursed.

    They cannot call him Lord either. You have to choose now, whom you will believe.

    Mark 3:29

    But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation:

    James 2:7

    Do not they blaspheme that worthy name by the which ye are called?

    Ephesians 4:3

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

    1 Timothy 1:20

    Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme.

    Revelation 13:6

    And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.

    Mark 3:28

    Verily I say unto you, All sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme:
  • Bob Hilt - in Reply on Ephesians 4:30
    Ed - I know we can not "lose" our salvation like you lose your car keys or a wallet.

    However can we throw away our salvation?

    Revelation 3:5 He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.

    (Seems our names can be BLOTTED out of the book of life)

    Exodus Chapter 32:31 And Moses returned unto the LORD, and said, Oh, this people have sinned a great sin, and have made them gods of gold.

    32 Yet now, if thou wilt forgive their sin--; and if not, blot me, I pray thee, out of thy book which thou hast written.

    33 And the LORD said unto Moses, Whosoever hath sinned against me, him will I blot out of my book.

    Jesus in Matthew 10:22 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved. (Why would Jesus say we must endure to the end?)

    Jesus in Matthew 10:33 But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.

    Revelation Chapter 14:9 And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive [his] mark in his forehead, or in his hand,

    10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:

    11 And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.

    12 Here is the patience of the saints: here [are] they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.

    I do not care what sinners prayer anyone says, if they take the mark I believe their are doomed.

    Sadly Millions of Church goers do not believe they will ever have to make this choice to refuse it.


 

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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