June 22, 2010

The calling demands unity: Ephesians 4:1-6

Ephesians 4:1-6  I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, 2 with all lowliness and gentleness, with long suffering, bearing with one another in love, 3 endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 4 There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6 one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you[a] all.- Ephesians 4:1-6 ( NKJV)

V.1- Walk worthy of the calling; What is the calling?

1 Corinthians 1:26-28 says
26 For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called. 27 But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; 28 and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are,

Our calling is:

1. To put to shame the wise and the things that are mighty in the world( or outside of the Holy Spirit)...to bring to nothing the things that seem to be something
2.to make known God's wisdom to the principalities & powers, ans spiritual wickedness in high places

1 Corinthians 2:5 says that our faith should not stand in the wisdom of man, but in the power of god. In effect- the wisdom of God is that which transcends, and in many cases oppose, the reason of man.

V.2- Bearing with one another in love
 There is an awesome list of what Love is and what Love does. God is calling his children to this, beyond denominational barriers that are crying to be torn down:
1 Corinthians 13:4-8 4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

8 Love never fails.
John 13:35- By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love one to another
v.3- There is peace in unity. How is unity achieved?
Romans 12:3-5 (King James Version)

3For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.
4For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office:
5So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.

We must all be built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Jesus Christ being our chief cornerstone ( Ephes. 2:20)
 1. One Lord
     -made him [Jesus] both Lord and Christ ( Acts 2:36)
     -The Word Lord in the old Testament substitutes the Hebrew form, "adonai" or "Elohim",meaning
      One that is of himself, and depends on nothing. In the New Testament, the Greek Word for Lord    is "Kyrios" or " kurios" meaning supreme ( greatest in power, authority, or rank)
    -this attribute can not be a shared attribute or it would negate the word itself, thereby negating God as who He is
2.One faith
     -"belief", " something that is believed with strong conviction" ( Merriam Webster). There is faith, and then there is "the faith"
     -"till we all come into the unity of the faith (ephes. 4:13)
     - continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope pf the gospel, which you have heard (colossians 1:23)
     -earnestly contend for the faith which was once  [for all]delivered to the saints ( Jude 1:3)
3. One Baptism
     -baptizo bap-tid'-zo from a derivative of 911; to immerse, submerge; to make whelmed (i.e. fully wet); used only (in the New Testament) ( Strong's lexicon)
     -baptisma bap'-tis-mah from 907; baptism (technically or figuratively):--baptism
     -loutron loo-tron' from 3068; a bath, i.e. (figuratively), baptism:--washing.
Baptism, the washing, by both water and spirit, both technically and figuratively- should be one

Where there is unity, there is strength. When the body of Christ is One, then we will be a testament of  God's wisdom in his divine plan for all of mankind. Men will know that we are his followers by the love we show one to another.

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