Chapters   1 2 3 4 5 6

Ephesians Chapter 4

  • (Eph 4:1) I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called,

Whatever we are called to do for the Lord, we are to walk worthy of it. We are not be bring reproach upon the gospel of Jesus Christ by living in a way that makes the gospel look bad.

  • (Eph 4:2) With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;

Our flesh is the exact opposite of lowliness and meekness. This seems to be the opposite of the attitude some use to have such as, "We are king's kids and should expect the best." That is not the way the bible says to walk. That way boasts of pride and vain glory. Christ teaches us to walk in humility, not pride and demanding the best. We already have the best if we have been born again. The "Best" is the things of the Spirit, not the things of this life. Forbearing means putting up with people and walking in love. I should say here, "God's love" not what the world passes off as love.

  • (Eph 4:3) Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

Unity in good things, unity in truth, unity in the things of God is always what brings in the presence of God. This does not mean that we are to join together or be one with those who teach false doctrine or believe you can sin and still be acceptable to God. We are to walk in peace and not fight and quarrel about trivial things. This does not mean that we are not to correct false practices and error. If it did it would contradict other scriptures.

  • Heb 12:14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:
  • Heb 12:15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;

Remember this verse says to follow peace with all men and we should strive for peace but it also says that we follow holiness. Without these we shall not see the Lord. Roots of bitterness in our hearts will defile us. Peace and holiness is taught in the scripture. Unity is also taught. However unity for the sake of getting along; if it compromises holiness is not what we are to seek. The bible says walk in the Spirit and we shall not fulfill the lusts of the flesh. So unity should be sought but not to the point where we begin to walk in the flesh and not the Spirit.

  • Eph 5:9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)
    Eph 5:10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. 
  • Eph 5:11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.
  • Eph 5:12 For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.

We see from verses we will study in chapter 5 that unity does not mean that we are to be unified with those that are walking in darkness. We are to be unified in truth.

  • 2Corinthians 6:14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?

Light and darkness do not mix.
While the bible stresses that we are to be of the same mind and one accord, we should be able to understand that it certainly does not intend for us to be of the same mind and one accord with evil.

  • (Eph 4:4) There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;

We are to be one in purpose and that is to obey God and obey His word. 

  • (Eph 4:5) One Lord, one faith, one baptism,
  • (Eph 4:6) One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

The emphasis here is that since there is one God: The Father, Son and Holy Spirit is actually one God in purpose with complete unity. Since they are one, we are to be one in unity. We are not to quarrel and fight over trivial issues but be of the same mind toward the things of God. Arguing over trivial things is pointless and causes strife.

There are not two ways of salvation but only one and we need to strive to get along and get the gospel to the whole world.

There are many other scriptures that tell us to correct error so naturally this does not tell us to forget sound doctrine just to get along with our brothers and sisters in Christ but avoid trivial things that are not important or are not found in the scriptures. As long as all fellow believers believe that Jesus is the only way of salvation and the basic doctrines of the word of God then we can walk in unity.  If one comes in though that is living in open adultery without receiving any correction or repenting of that adultery, then of course, we cannot walk in unity with that person because we would be accepting his sin that is contrary to the word of God. 

  • (Eph 4:7) But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.
  • (Eph 4:8) Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
  • (Eph 4:9) (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?
  • (Eph 4:10) He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)
  • (Eph 4:11) And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

God did not leave the church without sound doctrine and good teachers. To some of us He sends apostles, some He sends prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers. Not for the purpose of exalting them above everyone else but for:

  • (Eph 4:12) For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

All gifts of the Spirit and all who teach and preach are to edify the body of Christ. The Church.

  • (Eph 4:13) 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:

This is the unity spoken of in the 3rd verse. Unity of faith, unity of the knowledge of Christ and the fullness of Christ. So we see that we are encouraged to seek the unity that is in Christ Jesus not be unified with those who do evil. How do we know what is true and what is false doctrine? Study the bible.

  • (Eph 4:14) 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;

One purpose of a good church is to keep people informed about the doctrine of Jesus Christ so that they will not fall prey to false teachers and those that teach error.

  • John 8:31 Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;
  • Joh 8:32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. 

Sound doctrine is beautiful, fulfilling and rich.  To desire truth is to desire life. God gives us good things if we seek the right kind of good. 

  • John 10:4 And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. 
  • Joh 10:5 And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.

True sheep will know the voice of the shepherd.

  • (Eph 4:15) But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, evenChrist:

Speak the truth in love. The motive of a person walking in truth will be love. If we teach just to get the best of someone, to throw darts at someone or other motives other than the love of God, we are not teaching with the right motivation. Our motive in spiritual things should never be to outdo someone else, show off our knowledge, exalt ourselves or entertain. Our motive should be to edify the body, to love the brethren and to obey the Holy Spirit.

Speak the truth. Avoid anything that is contrary to scripture. Seek God for understanding of places in the word that are harder to understand.

  • (Eph 4:16) 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.

Everyone of us has different spiritual gifts and we should all work in unity for the edification of the body of Christ. We are to walk in love and seek to do the works of Christ, not exalt self and seek to outdo someone.

  • (Eph 4:17) This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind,

To walk in vanity is to be empty and seek substance to satisfy desires. It is a waste of time. It is to walk in self instead of walking in the Spirit. This is how a person is before they are born again and when we become Christians, vanity of mind should not be part of us any longer. That is why we gather together to learn more of God and seek His word so that the old desires will cease to be part of us and we then learn to walk in the Spirit which will enable us to walk in love.

  • (Eph 4:18) 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:
  • (Eph 4:19) Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.

If we find ourselves going back under this type of bondage, we need to turn around at once and run to God. These are to be avoided after coming to Christ.

  1. Lasciviousness - loose living, wanton, lewd, lustful. 
  2. Uncleanness - defilement by sin
  3. Greediness - Desiring things to the point of depriving others of it.
  • (Eph 4:20) But ye have not so learned Christ;

We are not to be that way after coming to Christ. The desire to outdo and best someone else is not a trait of Christians.

  • (Eph 4:21) If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus:
  • (Eph 4:22) That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;

A new way, a new beginning, a new life is what we have when we come to Christ. 

  • 2Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

Old things have passed away. This is why Jesus Came to Free us from these things. He makes us a new creature. We are not a sinner saved by grace but a new creature in Christ Jesus. Let us quick confessing this old stuff that has passed down the church for years. Another one is "Christian are not perfect, just forgiven." That is a copout and an excuse to get by with sin.

Old things have passed away and all things become new. In order to walk in the Spirit and not fulfill the lusts of the flesh, we need to daily seek God in closet prayer. We can't make it on our own. Gone are the days when we use to gather at the mourner's bench at church and pray until we prayed through. We are lucky to pray five minutes at church anymore. We sometimes will go to get prayed for but I don't see us going forward to kneel and pray for long periods of time anymore. It has become a lost art. At least we can do this at home if some are uncomfortable praying at church. 

  • (Eph 4:23) And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;
  • (Eph 4:24) And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.

Holiness. What a beautiful word that is hardly ever preached in our pulpits anymore.

Holiness is the state of being holy; purity or integrity of moral character; freedom from sin; sanctity. Applied to the Supreme Being, holiness denotes perfect purity or integrity of moral character, one of his essential attributes.

Churches have become so afraid of legalism that they avoid any teaching on holiness and that may be why sin had crept back into the church. Yet we see here that the bible teaches holy living after we come to Jesus Christ.

Holiness is a requirement to see the Lord. We can't just accept salvation through Jesus Christ and then live ungodly lives. Holiness is the standard for us after coming to God. Jesus makes us free from sin and we are not to go back and walk in that way anymore.

  • (Eph 4:25) Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.

Not even little white lies. The devil is a liar and if we lie we are following after the father of lies, the devil.

  • (Eph 4:26) Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:

We all get angry but we must not allow that anger to fester into hate. That is why we must get rid of it before the sun goes down. This is just saying don't let anger continue to the next day but get over it now.

  • (Eph 4:27) Neither give place to the devil.

Giving way to anger is giving place to the devil.

  • (Eph 4:28) 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.

If we truly love our neighbor as ourselves, we will not steal from them.

  • (Eph 4:29) 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.

If we truly love our neighbors as ourselves we will want to speak that which will edify and bless them, not tickle their ears with words they want to hear.

  • (Eph 4:30) And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.

All the above sins, grieve the precious holy Spirit that was given to us to teach, exhort, correct, and enable us to have the power to witness. Sin will grieve Him.

  • (Eph 4:31) Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:

Malice is revenge or wanting to get even. Bitterness is something that comes from being angry with someone and allowing it to grow into bitterness.

Speaking evil of a person is the same as killing them with your tongues. This is not the love of God. 

Clamor is loud crying out with complaints and raising the voice in protest against trivial things.

  • (Eph 4:32) And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.

Kindness, tenderness, forgiving as Jesus did to us, is true love. If we just treated others, how Jesus treats us, we would get along. Jesus loves us even when we fail. We should do the same to others.

Jesus corrects us when we sin. We should (in the spirit of meekness) correct a serious sin in our brethren as directed by the Holy Spirit. Not in a holier than thou spirit.

Being thankful for such things as we have and not murmuring and complaining if everything does not go the way we want it to is also a trait that is not godliness.

  • 1Timothy 6:3 If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;
  • 1Ti 6:4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, 
  • 1Ti 6:5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself. 
  • 1Ti 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain. 
  • 1Ti 6:7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
  • 1Ti 6:8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. 
  • 1Ti 6:9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
  • 1Ti 6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

This certainly puts out the prosperity doctrine. Seek the treasure that is in Heaven. Seek the eternal things. Seek the Spiritual things of God and you will be happier than if you continually sought and received the wealth of this world. There is no comparison to the things of God that is everlasting and the things of this world that will pass away.

God's joy lasts forever. The joy in receiving new material things is temporary.