TRUTH: Unity for the Called

In the first three chapters of Ephesians, Paul had spent time outlining all that God had done for the Ephesians and for us as fellow Gentile believers. He ended those chapters with “20 Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, 21 to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen” Ephesians 3:20-21.

When it comes to Paul’s epistles (letters) which are some books in the New Testament, it is generally accepted that Paul shares doctrine or what we are supposed to do as followers of Christ. Then in the latter portion of the book, Paul shares how we, as followers of Christ, are to live out that doctrine or what we are supposed to do.  The book of Ephesians is no different. TRUTH: Unity for the Called

Ephesians 4:1-6

Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all.

Call in the Greek is klēsis (klā’-sēs) which is the divine invitation to embrace salvation in the kingdom of God,

Romans 8:28 – And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 30 – and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.
Romans 11:29 – for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.
1 Corinthians 1:9 – God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Galatians 1:15 – But when God, who had set me apart even from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace, was pleased

Why does God call people?

Ephesians 3:10-11 – God’s intent – so that the manifold wisdom of God might now be made  known through the church to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly places11This was in accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out in Christ Jesus our Lord, 2 Thessalonians 2:14 – 14 It was for this He called you through our gospel, that you may gain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.

God wants to gain glory for Himself. Ultimately, that is why demands that we walk in the TRUTH: Unity for the Called.

In these first six verses, we see the outline for us to live by the TRUTH

Mentality for UnityChrist’s Charity (What v 1 )

Walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called. Walk refers to the way you live.

Because of our relationship with Christ, we are supposed to live a new life as 2 Corinthians 5:17 tells us. “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. ”We know from Romans 8 that Paul tells us we have an obligation to be led and to live by the Spirit. Where he ultimately tell us “Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. ”Paul also tells us in Galatians 5:16 to But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. While we are commanded to walk as such, the bible is clear that God desires us to obey him out of love and thankfulness. The call is the divine invitation to embrace salvation in the kingdom of God where He called us out of darkness into light, from not being a child of God to being a child of God will privileges. It is the grace of God that should create an attitude of gratitude that drives our mentality for unity.

Means of Unity – Christ’s Character (How v 2-3)

with all humility (lowliness) and gentleness (meekness) – Paul is calling for us to be humble. Remember his words in Philippians 2 Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also  for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus. Christ could have exercised authority or power, but because He was submitted to God our of their purpose, He did not. Likewise, we should not exercise power, authority or control simply because we can.

with patience (longsuffering), showing tolerance (fore bearing) for one another in love, – Again, Paul is asking us to endure one another patiently and bearing one another’s differences, weaknesses, idiosyncrasies through love (agape) i.e. good will, brotherly love, love feast. We see that in Colossians 3:12-13 – So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.

being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace

Motivation for Unity – Christ’s Consonance – Consonance (oneness) of the church (Why v4-6 )

Unity – henotēs (he nah tace) unanimity, agreement or oneness. Used only twice in 4:3 and 4:13 it is from the root of the word which is translated as one – the same oneness that Jesus prayed for in John 17:11, 21, 22, 23

John 17:11 – I am no longer in the world; and yet they themselves are in the world,and I come to You. Holy Father, keep them in Your name, the name which You have given Me, that they may be one even as We are.
John 17:21-23 – 21 that they may all be one; even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me. 22 The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; 23 I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me

Romans 12:5 – so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.
Galatians 3:28 – There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

one body – Romans 12:5 – so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and
individually members one of another.

one Spirit – 1 Corinthians 12:13 – 13 For by one Spirit we were all baptized into
one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we
were all made to drink of one Spirit.
Ephesians 2:18 – for through Him we both have our access in one Spirit
to the Father.

one hope – Ephesians 1:18 –  I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the
riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,

one Lord – 1 Corinthians 8:6 – yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from
whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus
Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him.

one faith – Acts 15:8-9 – And God, who knows the heart, testified to them giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He also did to us; and He made no distinction between us and them, cleansing their hearts by faith.  Romans 3:22 – even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction; Galatians 3:26 – For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.

one baptism – Romans 6:3-5 – Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection,

one God and Father – Deuteronomy 6:4 – “Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one! Zechariah 14:9 – and the Lord will be king over all the earth; in that day the Lord will be the only one, and His name the only one.

Now we know the basis for Unity of the Called.

Mentality for UnityChrist’s Charity
Means of Unity – Christ’s Character
Motivation for Unity – Christ’s Consonance

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