Living as God's Family

Ephesians 4:1-6:24

41I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beg you to walk worthily of the calling with which you were called, 2with all lowliness and humility, with patience, bearing with one another in love; 3being eager to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 4There is one body, and one Spirit, even as you also were called in one hope of your calling; 5one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6one God and Father of all, who is over all, and through all, and in us all. 7But to each one of us was the grace given according to the measure of the gift of Christ. 8Therefore he says, “When he ascended on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts to men.”* 9Now this, “He ascended”, what is it but that he also first descended into the lower parts of the earth? 10He who descended is the one who also ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things.
11He gave some to be apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, shepherds* and teachers; 12for the perfecting of the saints, to the work of serving, to the building up of the body of Christ; 13until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a full grown man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; 14that we may no longer be children, tossed back and forth and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in craftiness, after the wiles of error; 15but speaking truth in love, we may grow up in all things into him, who is the head, Christ; 16from whom all the body, being fitted and knit together through that which every joint supplies, according to the working in measure of each individual part, makes the body increase to the building up of itself in love.
17This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles also walk, in the futility of their mind, 18being darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardening of their hearts; 19who having become callous gave themselves up to lust, to work all uncleanness with greediness. 20But you did not learn Christ that way; 21if indeed you heard him, and were taught in him, even as truth is in Jesus: 22that you put away, as concerning your former way of life, the old man, that grows corrupt after the lusts of deceit; 23and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24and put on the new man, who in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of truth.
25Therefore putting away falsehood, speak truth each one with his neighbor. For we are members of one another. 26“Be angry, and don’t sin.”* Don’t let the sun go down on your wrath, 27and don’t give place to the devil. 28Let him who stole steal no more; but rather let him labor, producing with his hands something that is good, that he may have something to give to him who has need. 29Let no corrupt speech proceed out of your mouth, but only what is good for building others up as the need may be, that it may give grace to those who hear. 30Don’t grieve the Holy Spirit of God, in whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, outcry, and slander, be put away from you, with all malice. 32And be kind to one another, tender hearted, forgiving each other, just as God also in Christ forgave you.
51Be therefore imitators of God, as beloved children. 2Walk in love, even as Christ also loved you, and gave himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling fragrance. 3But sexual immorality, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not even be mentioned among you, as becomes saints; 4nor filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not appropriate; but rather giving of thanks.
5Know this for sure, that no sexually immoral person, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the Kingdom of Christ and God.
6Let no one deceive you with empty words. For because of these things, the wrath of God comes on the children of disobedience. 7Therefore don’t be partakers with them. 8For you were once darkness, but are now light in the Lord. Walk as children of light, 9for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth, 10proving what is well pleasing to the Lord. 11Have no fellowship with the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but rather even reprove them. 12For the things which are done by them in secret, it is a shame even to speak of. 13But all things, when they are reproved, are revealed by the light, for everything that reveals is light. 14Therefore he says, “Awake, you who sleep, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.”
15Therefore watch carefully how you walk, not as unwise, but as wise; 16redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17Therefore don’t be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18Don’t be drunken with wine, in which is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, 19speaking to one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs; singing, and making melody in your heart to the Lord; 20giving thanks always concerning all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to God, even the Father; 21subjecting yourselves to one another in the fear of Christ.
22Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23For the husband is the head of the wife, and Christ also is the head of the assembly, being himself the savior of the body. 24But as the assembly is subject to Christ, so let the wives also be to their own husbands in everything.
25Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the assembly, and gave himself up for it; 26that he might sanctify it, having cleansed it by the washing of water with the word, 27that he might present the assembly to himself gloriously, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without defect. 28Even so husbands also ought to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself. 29For no man ever hated his own flesh; but nourishes and cherishes it, even as the Lord also does the assembly; 30because we are members of his body, of his flesh and bones. 31“For this cause a man will leave his father and mother, and will be joined to his wife. The two will become one flesh.”* 32This mystery is great, but I speak concerning Christ and of the assembly. 33Nevertheless each of you must also love his own wife even as himself; and let the wife see that she respects her husband.
61Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2“Honor your father and mother,” which is the first commandment with a promise: 3“that it may be well with you, and you may live long on the earth.”*
4You fathers, don’t provoke your children to wrath, but nurture them in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
5Servants, be obedient to those who according to the flesh are your masters, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as to Christ; 6not in the way of service only when eyes are on you, as men pleasers; but as servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart; 7with good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men; 8knowing that whatever good thing each one does, he will receive the same again from the Lord, whether he is bound or free.
9You masters, do the same things to them, and give up threatening, knowing that he who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no partiality with him.
10Finally, be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of his might. 11Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world’s rulers of the darkness of this age, and against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13Therefore put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and, having done all, to stand. 14Stand therefore, having the utility belt of truth buckled around your waist, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15and having fitted your feet with the preparation of the Good News of peace; 16above all, taking up the shield of faith, with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the evil one. 17And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word* of God; 18with all prayer and requests, praying at all times in the Spirit, and being watchful to this end in all perseverance and requests for all the saints: 19on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in opening my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the Good News, 20for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.
21But that you also may know my affairs, how I am doing, Tychicus, the beloved brother and faithful servant in the Lord, will make known to you all things; 22whom I have sent to you for this very purpose, that you may know our state, and that he may comfort your hearts.
23Peace be to the brothers, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 24Grace be with all those who love our Lord Jesus Christ with incorruptible love. Amen.

*Ephesians 4:8 Psalm 68:18
*Ephesians 4:11 or, pastors
*Ephesians 4:26 Psalm 4:4
*Ephesians 5:31 Genesis 2:24
*Ephesians 6:3 Deuteronomy 5:16
*Ephesians 6:17 from Greek rhema, which means spoken word

FOLLOWING GODLY EXAMPLES

  • Does this portion of Scripture address a character quality you should seek to cultivate? What is it?
  • What actions can you embark on in your life to do this?
  • Does this portion of Scripture address a character flaw you should seek to uproot? What is it?
  • What actions can you embark on your life to do this?
World English Bible (WEB)
a Public Domain Modern English translation
of the Holy Bible.

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