We are a part of a unique community–The Church.
Verses 1-13 of Ephesians 4 urges each of us to understand we are more than individual entities, each saved through “the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.” Just what does that mean? What does it look like?
Read Ephesians 4:14-16 in The Message. If it is possible, please read it aloud.
14-16 No prolonged infancies among us, please. We’ll not tolerate babes in the woods, small children who are easy prey for predators. God wants us to grow up, to know the whole truth and tell it in love—like Christ in everything. We take our lead from Christ, who is the source of everything we do. He keeps us in step with each other. His very breath and blood flow through us, nourishing us so that we will grow up healthy in God, robust in love. Ephesians 4:14-16, MSG
Signs of the Times
- Paul often warned the readers of his letter to be on guard against false teachings. This shows us that from the earliest times of Christianity, distortions and heresies worked to pull followers away from central Christian teachings. (See: 2 Corinthians 11:15, 12:1, and Galatians 1:8)
- The church in Ephesus had received three books of Scripture: Paul’s letter to the church itself (Ephesians) and two letters to the pastor of the Ephesus Christians (1 and 2 Timothy). The apostle John lived there and probably wrote the Gospel of John before his exile to Patmos.
- Revelation 2:1-4 (revealed by God to John during his exile on the island of Patmos) tells us that this church stood firm in both their deeds and their doctrine for 30 years, but they had failed to maintain their devotion and became spiritually indifferent.
Read Ephesians 4:14-16 for a second time, this time using the New Living Translation.
14 Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. 15 Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. 16 He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love. Ephesians 4:14-16, NLT
In the first 13 verses of Ephesians 4, Paul tells us the importance of being interdependent parts of one body—the church. For our chart today, let’s focus on what Paul tells us what it will look like if we are individual parts of one body. What does he tells us about what the church looks like.
|Paul tells us, “We are one body, one Spirit, one Church.”|
Quiet your mind, open your heart, and listen for the whisper of the Holy Spirit as you read the Scripture for the third time, this time in The Passion Translation.
14 And then our immaturity will end! And we will not be easily shaken by trouble, nor led astray by novel teachings or by the false doctrines of deceivers who teach clever lies. 15 But instead we will remain strong and always sincere in our love as we express the truth. All our direction and ministries will flow from Christ and lead us deeper into him, the anointed Head of his body, the church. 16 For his “body” has been formed in his image and is closely joined together and constantly connected as one. And every member has been given divine gifts to contribute to the growth of all; and as these gifts operate effectively throughout the whole body, we are built up and made perfect in love. Ephesians 4:14-16, TPT
How do you choose to communicate or respond to what God has led you to as you read these verses today? Words, doodling, choosing a picture, writing a song,… The possibilities are many; the choice is yours.
I’d love to hear from you. Share your thoughts and pictures with me in the comment section below or send me an email at KSEvenhouseWWV@gmail.com.