Don't forget to visit my dear friend Jenilee and her thoughts on Ephesians 4!
Chapter Breakdown (Matthew Henry Commentary)
1. Exhortations to mutual forbearance and union (vs. 1-6)
2. To a dues use of spiritual gifts and graces. (vs. 7-16)
3. To purity and holiness (vs. 17-24)
4 And to take heed of the sins practiced among the heathen. ( vs. 25-32)
Once again this chapter is so full of good teaching that my little blog could never do it justice. I could read this over and over and each time get something new out of it. I think I have read it over 4 times today already and each time something different pops out at me.
Basically, we see Paul instructing us on the nuts and bolts of being a Christian within the body of Christ. I wonder if the Body of Christ looked in the mirror would it reflect these things that should bring unity?? Do we as individuals reflect Christ? Paul write to us what the Church should be displaying....
The Body of Christ:
bear with one another in love
make every effort to keep unity, peaceful!
all these things add up to bring about UNITY!
This is one of the pieces of art that I judged at the National Fine Arts Festival. When people look at us do we reflect ALL these things because of Christ in us??? When people see us do they see Christ?
Can you imagine if the Church actually put all these things into practice?! We would then become the "mature body of Christ" that Paul goes on to describe in verses 11-16. I think many would agree we have a lot of babies in our churches today. That is where leaders must rise up and "equip the people for works of service, so that the body of Christ would be built up!" (vs 12) We would then be a true representation of Christ and being honor to His name!
- put off their old self, which is corrupted by sinful desires (vs. 22)
- be made new in the attitude of our minds (vs 23)
- put on a new self created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.(vs. 24)
I like the next portion of scripture. Paul is very clear what a follower of Christ is like. He shows us what to avoid and what to do to not grieve the Holy Spirit....
Don't / Do
Don't Sin while angry, give Satan a foothold/ Work things out
Don't Steal / Work hard and share with those in need
Unwholesome Talk / Build each other up
Bitterness, rage, anger, brawling, slander, all malice / Kindness, compassion, forgiveness
What I find interesting is that if you are struggling in one of these areas focus on doing the opposite to help you get back on the right path.
What God Wants To Show Me Today
There was one verse that really grabbed a hold of me today.....
I have to admit that sometimes living a life worthy of the calling seems almost impossible to me. Sometimes, I feel so inadequate. Thank goodness for the power of the Holy Spirit in my life always drawing me closer, convicting me and helping me fall in love with Him more and more. Thank you Jesus that it is by your Grace that we are saved. Lord thank you for the work of regeneration that is always at work in this little soul. For it is be God alone that I could ever be in any way worthy.
I want nothing more than to attain the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. (vs. 13) Hopefully, someday when I stand before the throne my life will have been "worthy of the calling"!