Skip to main content

Ephesians 4:12-14: Building up the Body of Christ


Ephesians 4:12–14
[12] to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, [13] until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, [14] so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. (ESV)

So, after Paul has described the essential gifts of leadership to the church (Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, and Pastor-Teachers), he describes the ultimate goal of following these leaders. Listen to some of these key words:  unity, knowledge, maturity.  It is amazing to me that some 2000 years later these continue to be great needs in the church.  And the main reason why unity, knowledge, and maturity are lacking is that we have not heeded the leadership that God has given to his church. 

The teaching that we gain from the words of the Apostles and Prophets are essential truth for us.  The Evangelists preach the Gospel and bring people into the church.  The Pastor-Teachers give them further instruction.  What is the result?  People become unified as they all are committed to the same message of the Gospel.  Their knowledge is increased as they hear the whole counsel of the Word of God preached and taught.  And ultimately, they become mature, and unwavering.  They are the pillars of the faith that cannot be swayed by the false doctrine and cunning of the enemy.

The need in the first century church is the same need that we have today.  I have talked with so many Christians that believe such nonsense.  They are swept away by the latest "Christian fad."  They have even incorporated occultic practices into their lives.  They fight for their own way in church meetings, displaying a complete lack of maturity.  How sad.  But, there is hope.  It is always found in God's Word.  Paul's instruction for us is clear.

Do you want to be mature in your faith, acting in unity, and growing in the knowledge of the Son of God?  Devote yourself to the teaching of the Apostles and Prophets.  Support the work of Evangelists and Preacher-Teachers.  Let's grow up together!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Romans 8:18: For I Consider That The Sufferings Of This Present Time Are Not Worth Comparing

Romans 8:18
[18] For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. (ESV)

Perspective. What an important word. Let's be honest. We do not like the idea of suffering. We will do almost anything to avoid any kind of suffering. Some churches have gone so far as to preach against the idea of suffering, declaring it to not be a part of the true believer's life. Paul is not shy about the topic.

Paul uses the sufferings of this present time as a means to consider the greater glory that awaits us. Perspective. Paul is not in any way attempting to diminish our suffering. A view toward eternity puts our suffering in a proper understanding. Yes, our suffering is terrible. In the grand scheme of eternity it is not even worth comparison.

Maybe you are thinking that Paul does not know what he is talking about when it comes to suffering. In 2 Corinthians 11 Paul describes countless beatings, often near death, being ston…

Romans 15:14: I Myself Am Satisfied About You, My Brothers

Romans 15:14
[14] I myself am satisfied about you, my brothers, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able to instruct one another. (ESV)

The Apostle Paul was a strong man. His words to the churches in all of his letters are full of doctrinal truth and instruction that are not for the faint of heart. In this letter to the church at Rome he had to correct them in their understanding of how to deal with issues that could potentially divide them. Paul had never even been to Rome yet. He had not met these believers.

Paul is telling the church at Rome in this verse that the reason they were able to receive his strong words was because of their spiritual maturity. He declares that they are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able to instruct one another. This is an incredible compliment that Paul would not offer to every church.

This concept of being filled with goodness and knowledge speaks of a group of believers who had listened to the Word of…

Romans 15:16: To Be A Minister Of Christ Jesus To The Gentiles In The Priestly Service Of The Gospel Of God

Romans 15:16
[16] to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles in the priestly service of the gospel of God, so that the offering of the Gentiles may be acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit. (ESV)

The time of the Early Church was a time of great transition. Up until Christ coming and bringing redemption to all who believer the people of faith were the Jews. If you wanted to worship God the only appropriate way was to go through a priest who would offer sacrifices on your behalf to God. All of the sacrificial system was fulfilled in Christ. Now, there was a new way to righteousness.

This time of transition was a challenge for all involved. The Jews had to move from an approach to God that involved keeping the Law. The Law was fulfilled in Christ. Now the way of salvation was a way of faith. There were some traditional aspects that were now gone. It was hard for them to move away from their traditions. It is hard for all of us to move from our traditions.

For the Gentile convert…