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Ephesians Chapter 4

Memory verses for this week: 1 John 1:8  If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 1 John 1:9  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 

Introduction:     Chapter 3, we studied about the mystery concerning how the Gentiles would be together with the Jews in the church today.   While there was prophecy about the Gentiles being saved in the latter days, there was no warning about the church coming into existence.   The bible contains many mysteries… some we can study and understand, others that we have to accept on faith.


I.  The Christian’s Worthy Walk of Unity 

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

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

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


Paul uses an unusual explanation in his walk with the Lord when he says he is a prisoner of the Lord.   What is so strange about this is that only when we are totally and wholly dedicated to God are we truly free.  But Paul was so determined to serve God that he considered himself a prisoner to the Lord.  We should all have that type of commitment.   Like the study of the bondservant who had his ear notched with and awl and agreed to serve his master the rest of his life.   If we are to walk worthy of our calling, we need to know what we were call to do.   And we are called out to be a special separated people unto Christ.   A peculiar people that this world won’t ever understand since we are just pilgrims passing through this land waiting for our ultimate home in heaven. 

Paul gives us some instructions on how we need to walk as Christians.

1. We are to walk worthy

2. Walk with all lowliness

3. Walk with meekness

4.  Walk with longsuffering

5.  Walk in love

6.  Walk in the Spirit

7.  Walk in peace


We can make lists of how we should do things, but to do all of these takes dedication and consecration. 

II.  The Sevenfold Unity of Faith 

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

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 one body of course is the local New Testament Church.  If there is anything the church needs in order to be effective, it is to have the Lord in our presence and to believe the same thing. 

John 15:5  I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. 

1 Corinthians 1:10  Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. 

There are seven major doctrines mentioned in these verses that we should all be in agreement about. 

1.  There is one body… the Local New Testament Church… it is local and visible.    It is worthy of mentioning there there truly is no universal invisible church.  All those who are saved make up the family of God.   The baptized believers in the church make up the local body.

2.  There is one spirit... The Holy Spirit is the only true Spirit.

3.  There is one hope…  Through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

4.  One Lord…  Jesus Christ (co-equal with the Father and Holy Spirit)

5.  One faith…  this the one system of teaching.   You’ve heard people say that you are of one faith and I am of another faith.  According to the word of God, there is only one true faith. 

Jude 3  Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.


Romans 10:8  But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;

2 Timothy 4:2  Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

6.  One baptism… immersion by water after we are saved

7.  One God… The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit 

III.  The Ministry Gifts to His Body, the Church

Eph 4:7  But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. 

In the ministry gifts of Christ to His body, there is a truth that many members fail to see.   God gave gifts unto men and these are given according to the measure of the gift of Christ.   Some teach that at regeneration, every believer is given the gift of the Holy Spirit and also a gift of the Spirit to use in the service of the Lord.  I believe this is a true teaching.  Do you know of any child of God that has not some special gift they can use in the work of the Lord?  You may have the gift of encouragement, or perhaps you can teach.  Others can sing or exhort the church in some other manner.  Whatever these special gifts are, we should all use them for the honor and glory of the Lord.  Have you sought out that special gift God has given you?   We should all seek those special gifts and use them. 

1 Cor 14:1  Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy. 

1 Cor 14:12  Even so ye, forasmuch as ye are zealous of spiritual gifts, seek that ye may excel to the edifying of the church. 

J. Vernon McGee had this to say about spiritual gifts. 

God has given gifts to believers, as we see in Romans 12 and again in 1 Corinthians, chapters 12–14. Although believers are to give diligence to maintain the unity of the Spirit, this does not mean that each is a carbon copy of the other. Each believer is given a gift so that he may function in the body of believers in a particular way. Paul writes, “But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal” (1 Cor. 12:7). This means that a gift is the Spirit of God doing something through the believer for the purpose of building up the body of believers. It is for the profit of the whole body of believers. No gift is given to you to develop you spiritually. A gift is given to you in order that you might function in the body of believers to benefit and bless the church.

Many folks say, “Dr. McGee, we do not speak in tongues in the church. We do it for our private devotions.” I can say to them categorically from the Word of God that they are wrong. Gifts are given to profit the church. No gift is to be used selfishly for personal profit. In fact, it is not a gift if it is being used that way. A gift is given to every member of the body to enable him to function for a very definite reason in his position in the body.

Suppose my eyes would tell me that they are sleepy and will not get up with me. Suppose my legs say they won’t carry me downstairs to my study. I need both my eyes and my legs, and I hope my brain cooperates too. In fact, all the members of my body need to work together, each member doing the job it’s supposed to do. [1] 

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; 

These verses speak of how Christ descended to the lowest position among men --  A carpenters son to die on Calvary’s Cross.   Being crucified was the lowest and perhaps the most vile way of death.  Cursed is everyone hung from a tree. 

Gal 3:13  Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: 

Hebrews 2:9   But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. 

We are told that he ascended far above all heavens.   This speaks of him taking His seat at the right hand of God to never die again.  The lower parts of the earth  do not teach that Christ went into Hell to pay our debt for our sins.  He paid the debt when he shed His blood and died on the cross.  Verse 11 speaks of some of the special gifts God gave in the church including apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers. 


IV.  The Purpose of the Ministry Gifts 

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

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: 

The spiritual gifts mentioned in verse 11 were given for a threefold purpose.  They were for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, and for the edifying of the church.  We see in verse 13 that this perfecting of the saints is to continue until Christ returns.   On the day of resurrection, many things will change.  Most of all we will be taken out of this world and given a glorified body like unto that of the Lord Jesus Christ. 

Phil 3:20  For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:

Phil 3:21  Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself. 

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;

Eph 4:15  But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:

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. 

God’s desire is that every child of God be firmly established in His Word, and not be tossed about by every wind of doctrine.  You see many young Christians (not necessarily in age but in maturity) moving from one church to another as they hear of some new doctrinal teaching that sounds good to them.  Most of the time, they have not seriously studied the topic nor prayed for God’s guidance in understanding the teaching.    We all should be firmly set and understand the doctrines in the bible.   God’s desire is that we totally understand ALL of the Word and rightly divide it that men can not deceive us with the cunning craftiness.   And believe me, there are as many if not more false teachers out in the world as there are men teaching the truth. 

2 Tim 2:15  Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 

1 John 4:1  Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

1 John 4:2  Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:

1 John 4:3  And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world. 

We are to speak the truth and grow up in all phases and teachings of the Word of God.  We need to be mature Christians, not babes in the Word.  The body which is the Church should be fitly joined together. 

V.  The Walk of the Believer as A New Man in Christ 

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,

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.

Eph 4:20  But ye have not so learned Christ; 

It was common teaching to use the Gentiles as connotation towards living like the world since the Jews and Gentiles had earlier had no dealings one with another prior to them now being saved and added into the church.  Our conduct should definitely be different than that of the world. 

Colossians 3:5-6  Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: 6 For which things’ sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience: 

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;

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.

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

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

Eph 4:27  Neither give 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.

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. 

Christ is the example that the child of God needs to look to as how he or she should live.  Good men may seem to be a model of perfection sometimes, but they may fail us.  God will NEVER fail us. 

1 Peter 2:21   For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: 

When a person is saved, he or she becomes a new creature in Christ.  At that time, we are to put away the old man (the fleshly man) and put on the new man.  (the spiritual man.)  The new man is regenerated.   We know we will still have battles with the flesh since it wars against the spirit, that is why we are commanded to be “Renewed in the spirit of your mind.” 

Rom 12:2  And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.


VI.  The Walk of the Believer as Indwelt by the Spirit 

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

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

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

We should each day strive to walk in the Spirit of the Lord.  That means having a tender heart and listening for the guidance that only God can give us through the Holy Spirit.  Paul says to put away bitterness, wrath, anger and all evil speaking and be people that are kind and gentle.   These things mentioned in verse 31 are things that displease God.  But Verse 32 speaks of things pleasing to our Lord.  He says we should be kind to one another, forgiving one to the other, and to remember that God forgave us for Christ’s sake.  How can we expect God to forgive us if we have a spirit that refuses to forgive others who have done us wrong. 

Mat 7:2  For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.

Mat 7:3  And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?

Mat 7:4  Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?

Mat 7:5  Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.


The Believers Study Bible said this about grieving the Holy Spirit. 

4:30 Because the Holy Spirit is a Person, He may be grieved by the behavior of Christians. This state is always especially unfortunate since the Holy Spirit is the One who seals believers “for the day of redemption.” Some of the actions and attitudes which grieve the Holy Spirit are noted in 4:25–29, 31; 5:3–6. In these same verses are also listed attitudes and actions which are pleasing to the Spirit of God.  [2]



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Prov 4:18  But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.


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