"THE EPISTLE TO THE EPHESIANS" Chapter Four OBJECTIVES IN STUDYING THE CHAPTER 1) To see the importance of walking in unity and purity 2) To appreciate the gifts Christ has given the church for our edification, and the need for each one to do their share SUMMARY Beginning with this chapter and proceeding through the rest of the epistle, Paul exhorts the Ephesians to walk in a manner worthy of their calling. Having described earlier how Jesus attained unity between Jew and Gentile through His death on the cross, Paul now pleads with them to "walk in unity." With humility, gentleness, longsuffering, forbearance and love, they should be diligent to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. The unity of the Spirit is then defined as consisting of one body, one Spirit, one hope, one Lord, one faith, one baptism and one God (1-6). Perhaps as motivation, Paul reminds them of the gracious gifts Christ gave His church following His ascension to heaven. Such gifts included the offices of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers, which are designed to equip the saints for ministry and bring the body of Christ to maturity. In this way, it should not be misled by false doctrine, but instead by speaking the truth in love should grow in Christ as each member does it share (7-16). The last half of this chapter addresses the need to "walk in purity." Contrasting how they once walked as Gentiles in licentiousness and greediness, they are reminded of the truth which is in Jesus. This truth calls upon them to put off the old man with its deceitful lusts, to be renewed in the spirit of their mind, and to put on the new man that is created in righteousness and holiness. Therefore they are called upon to put away lying, anger, theft, and all forms of evil speaking, lest they grieve the Holy Spirit by whom they were sealed for the day of redemption. Instead, they are to speak with truth and grace, work hard to help those in need, and be kind, tender-hearted, and forgiving just as God has forgiven them in Christ (17-32). OUTLINE I. A CALL TO WALK IN UNITY (1-16) A. PRESERVING THE UNITY OF THE SPIRIT (1-6) 1. To walk worthy of our calling (1) 2. With the proper attitudes (2-3) a. Lowliness and gentleness b. Longsuffering, bearing with one another in love c. Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace 3. The unity of the Spirit defined (4-6) a. One body b. One Spirit c. One hope of your calling d. One Lord e. One faith f. One baptism g. One God and Father of all B. EDIFYING THE BODY OF CHRIST (7-16) 1. For to each one grace was given as measured out by Christ (7-10) a. As foretold in Scripture b. Having ascended far above all the heavens to fill all things 2. Gifts Christ gave to His church (11) a. Apostles b. Prophets c. Evangelists d. Pastors e. Teachers 3. Purpose of such gifts (12-16) a. Equipping the saints for the work of ministry b. Edifying the body of Christ, till we all come to: 1) The unity of the faith 2) The knowledge of the Son of God 3) A perfect man 4) The measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ c. That we might no longer be children... 1) Tossed about by every wind of doctrine 2) Tricked by the cunning craftiness of those who lie in wait to deceive d. That we speak the truth in love... 1) So we may grow up in all things into Christ, the head 2) To cause growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love a) As we are joined and knit together by what each joint supplies b) As every part does its effective work in doing its share II. A CALL TO WALK IN PURITY (17-32) A. NOT AS THE GENTILES WALK (17-19) 1. Who walk in the futility of their mind (17-18) a. With understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God b. With ignorance, because of the hardening of their heart 2. Who have given themselves over to licentiousness (19) a. Being past feeling b. To work all uncleanness with greediness B. BUT AS LEARNED FROM CHRIST (20-32) 1. Having heard and been taught by Him, and the truth which is in Him (20-24) a. To put off the old man which grows corrupt in its deceitful lusts b. To be renewed in the spirit of one's mind c. To put on the new man which was created according to God in righteousness and holiness 2. Therefore putting away things of the old man (25-31) a. Such as lying, instead speaking truth b. Such as anger and giving place to the devil c. Such as stealing, instead working to give to those in need d. Such as corrupt speech, instead speaking with grace to edify those who hear e. Such as grieving the Holy Spirit, by whom we were sealed for the day of redemption f. Such as all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, evil speaking, all malice 3. Instead be kind to one another (32) a. Tender-hearted, forgiving b. Just as God in Christ forgave us
REVIEW QUESTIONS FOR THE CHAPTER Move your mouse pointer underneath each question to see the answer.
1) What are the main points of this chapter? 2) How is the Christian to walk? (1) 3) What attitudes are consistent with the Christian walk? (2-3) 4) What seven facets make up the unity of the Spirit? (4-6) 5) What gracious gifts have been given by Christ to His church? (7-11) 6) What is the purpose of such gifts or functions? (12-14) 7) As we speak the truth in love, what are we to be doing? What assists us in this? (15-16) 8) How should we no longer walk? (17) 9) How are those in the world walking? Why? (17-19) 10) In contrast, what truth have we learned from Christ? (20-24) 11) What sort of things are we to therefore put away? (25-32) 12) What sort of things should we be doing instead? (25-32) 13) Why should we be concerned about doing such things? (30)