The Unity of the Church Part II

The Unity of the Church Part II – (Ephesians 4:1-6)

Daily Verse(s)
I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

Reading Notes
Starting with chapter four we see a transition in Paul’s letter. Paul transitions from doctrine to practice as he begins to touch on the practical duty and conduct of every believer. Paul goes from teaching the “why” of our salvation, to teaching how to live out the salvation we have through faith alone, in Jesus alone. He is giving practical advice to the believers at Ephesus. In addition, Paul cautiously reminds his readers of his imprisonment. He does so as a gentle reminder of the cost of following Christ. His imprisonment is an example of what it means to be faithful to the Lord. This was especially important at this particular time in history. Within the Roman Empire, Christians were beginning to face stronger and stronger persecution. Unlike other groups Christians and Christianity did not have the protection of the Roman government and in most cases it ran contrary to what people believed and practiced. This was a time when people worshipped many gods. They had family gods, gods associated with the cities and regions where they lived, they even had gods specific to the various trades and industries. Much of the social interactions and activities of the day revolved around celebrations to these false gods. Because of this idol worship was woven into the fabric of day to day life.

Therefore, Paul is reminding them of the nature of the world we live in and he is exhorting them to remain faithful. Moreover, as followers of Jesus, we are to always fix our eyes on our Lord. Paul reminds believers that the church is called the body of Christ. This is because it is comprised of every believer since the day of Pentecost. The body of Christ includes all believers without exception and without recognition of race, gender or nationality. We are all brought together by one Spirit, who is the Holy Spirit. Under one Lord who is Jesus Christ, for the glory of one God and Father who is above all. Notice how Paul nicely ties together the role and persons of the Trinity. Paul speaks of the Holy Spirit in verse four. Jesus in verse five and God the Father in verse six. He does so to help us remember that our salvation is a work of the entire Godhead. God the Father sent forth His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. It was Jesus who stepped out of eternity and died for us, that we may live for Him. And while we were dead in our trespasses and sins, it was the Holy Spirit who touched our hearts, that we may hear the Gospel message, accept Jesus and be saved by our Lord and Savior. And after salvation, we are filled and brought together by the Holy Spirit who works in the lives of all believers. And all of this is done to the glory of God the Father.