1 I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called,
2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;
<b>Lowlinesss and meekness is the amount by which the beliver is prepared to give up self and take up the cross and walk in love. (see commentary note on Matt 16:24)</b>
3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
<b>Not endeavouring to create a unity with each other, but seeking to come into one and unity with the word of God in Christ by the Holy Spirit. (1 Joh 5:7)</b>
4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;
<b>All believers are "one body" in Jesus Christ and have one Holy Spirit who brings life and the hope of seeing Christ and being transformed into His likeness. When we dwell in unity with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit we are in unity with one another, unity in Him, not unity with each other outside of Him.</b>
5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism,
<b>One Lord who is our Master, one faith, the faith of Christ, in Christ and His atonement, one baptism into Jesus Christ (Eph 4:5). </b>
6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
<b>One Lord who is our Master, one faith, the faith of Christ in Christ and His atonement, one baptism into Jesus Christ (Eph 4:5). We are all one family because we all share "one God and Father" (Eph 4:6). One God is above all, through all and working through all, indwelling every believer. </b>
7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.
8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
<b>Jesus had triumphed over the grave, and death itself . He spoiled principalities and powers making a public show of them triumphing over them in it. (Col 2:15) Now Jesus has commanded us to enforce that victory. How? through that same regained authority and dominion by manifesting His love and operating in the gifts He has given us. (Eph 4:11)</b>
9 (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?
10 He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)
<b>God promised to send a man, the seed of woman, to strip the serpent of his power over mankind and completely crush him (Genesis 3:15). The phrase, bruise thy head, in Genesis 3:15, means to strip of power or to crush (the head representing rank or authority). But until such time as the serpent would be stripped of his power, the righteous dead were held captive, for their protection, in a place called Abraham’s Bosom (Luk 16:22) This place was beautiful enough to be called paradise, but it was not Heaven (Luk 16:22-25, Ezek 31:16, Job 14:13). When Jesus ascended to Heaven after his resurrection he took these “captive” souls with him, but first he had to descend into the “lower parts of the earth” to get them (Eph 4:8-10)</b>
11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
<b>The gift of the evangelist a gift designed to minister to the spiritual needs of local congregations, to the care and nurturing of believers. The ministry gift of prophet is a gift generally directed towards God’s people and has not changed in function from Old Testament to New. Prophets have always spoken under the direct inspiration of God. If we believe the Lord our God, we will be established. If we believe his prophets, we shall prosper. The gift of apostle carries with it leadership authority and combines the gifts of prophet, evangelist, pastor and teacher. Ephesians 4:12-14 tells us why the ministry Gifts are bestowed in order to build up and complete the Body of Christ until we all come into the unity of the faith and are mature in every way. That will not happen until Jesus comes. Therefore, the ministry gifts are still needed and are still being bestowed. .</b>
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:
<b>Go ye therefore equipped. Then bring on salvation by telling the world about the plan, standing in nothing less than Christ’s own perfection. This is the purpose and design of God in giving these gifts to man. He anticipates the church growing up (Eph 4:14).</b>
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;
15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
<b>Many believe that we are to receive Christ as an ad on to our daily lives and grow to become better and better christians, to become more 'Christlike'.
In truth this is impossible, for all believers carry the inherited sinful nature in their soul (flesh) (Gal 5:16-18) and no amount of improvement will eradicate the inherant sinful nature. But when we rise into Christ as Paul states 'grow up into Him' with Him as the head of our lives, we rise into His faith, His perfection, His anointing and the soul is brought into subjection to the born again spirit. (1 Cor 9:27) The amount we move into Him corresponds to the amount we are prepared to give up of ourselves in a renewed mind and to 'take up our cross' and release ourselves into Him. (Matt 16:24-26)</b>
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.
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,
<b>Walking in an un renewed mind. (Rom 12:2).</b>
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:
<b>When we walk in an un renewed mind we walk in blindness of heart and separate ourselves from God. God does not separate from us, He will never leave or forsake us, but we can choose to separate from His guiding and governing and become pastors of our own lives (Col 1:21-29) Understanding is darkened when we ignore the promptings of the Holy Spirit . (Mark 4:13, John 16:13) </b>
19 Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.
20 But ye have not so learned Christ;
21 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus:
22 That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;
23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;
<b>Walk in the spirt, walk in a renewed mind. (Rom 12:2).</b>
24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
<b>Walking in the 'old man' is the person who although 'born again' in his spirit, chooses to walk in the ways contrary to God and His word, walking according to the dictates of the inherited sinful nature (walking governed by the soul). When we deny the former man we are free to put on the 'new man' (Christ) and rise into Him, walking and living in the Holy Spirit. (Rom 12:2, Gal 5:16-18 amp)</b>
25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.
26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
27 Neither give place to the devil.
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.
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.
30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
<b>The Holy Spirit is a person who can be grieved (1 Cor 6:11, Act 5:4). Certainly, any actions or circumstances contrary to God's perfect plan for us grieve the Holy Spirit. More specifically, all the things listed here (Eph 4:25-31) grieve the Spirit of God.</b>
31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:
32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.
<b>Forgiveness is releasing the care back to God, for He cares for us. (1 Pet 5:7 amp) To retain unforgiveness creates a road block in the spirit in which we choose to separate ourself from God and stay in our own unforgiverness. He forgave us before we repented or asked for forgiveness. The offense against Him was infinitelygreater than any offense we have ever suffered. So, since He forgave us, we can forgive anyone if we walk in love, if we walk in Him. (1 John 4:19)</b>