Review, Preview and this week’s outline

At times it is valuable to step back and take a long view or a “forest through the trees” view of our study. This post will not look all the way back to the beginning of our study of Ephesians but will review back to the last major section break and onto the end of the Epistle.

There was a major section break at 4:1, “I … beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called”.

A review of chapter 4 – The church is to be:

  1. Characterized by unity (4:1-6) (“endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” (3)) (Notes)
  2. Energized by the exercise of spiritual gifts (4:7-16), (“the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love” (16)) (Notes 1, Notes 2 )
  3. Populated by “new men” (4:17-24), “that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness” (24)) (Notes)
  4. Pleasing (not grieving) the Holy Spirit (4:25-32), “do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God” (30)). (Notes) What pleases God?
    • Believers who are cognizant of and live as “members of one another” (25)
    • Believers who live honestly and interact truthfully (“Let each one of you speak truth” (25))
    • Believers who are quick to reconcile (“do not let the sun go down on your wrath” (26))
    • Believers who speak to edify: (“may impart grace to the hearers” (29))
    • Believers with right heart attitudes who are not bitter, angry, slanderous, malicious (31))
    • Believers who are kind and forgiving (“And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you” (32))

This week’s lesson: We are to live obediently, separately, discerningly

  1. Walk in love (5:1-6) (Live Obediently): “Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love”
  2. Walk in light (5:7-14) (Live Separately): “do not be partakers with them. … Walk as children of light”
  3. Walk in wisdom (5:15-17) (Live Discerningly): “walk circumspectly … understand what the will of the Lord is”

 

Preview to the end of the Epistle

  1. Christians are empowered by the “filling of the Spirit” (5:18-21)
  2. Spirit enablement:
    • In Marriage (5:22-33)
    • In the Family (6:1-4)
    • In the workplace (6:5-9)
  3. Be strong in the Lord (6:10-20)
  4. Conclusion (6:21-24)

Suggested strategy to prepare for this week’s study:

  1. Quickly reread the entire epistle.
  2. Slow down your reading when you come to chapter 5; and read 5:1-17 carefully.
  3. You may find it helpful to read in multiple translations (I find this very helpful).
  4. Pray for our study. Pray for your teacher (me). Pray for yourself. Pray for others in the group!

I hope to see you this Wednesday!

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