Synopsis: Be encouraged, not put off by Paul's present
position, to live out your calling, remembering you are one body,
a body that has been gifted by God with gifts and ministries to
build it up and equip it to serve God. Know the security of the
body and don't be tempted to live like unbelievers but hold fast
to your calling as the body of Christ.]
Unity in the Body of Christ
Synopsis: Please him in prison by the way you live out
your calling, exhibiting Christ's nature and being united at his
(although I am a prisoner,
I want you to fulfil your potential) As
a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy
of the calling you have received.
(let humility, gentleness,
patience & love be seen in you) Be
completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another
(work for unity)
effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.
(remembering you are
one body with one Lord) There
is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope
when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God
and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
Differences in the body of Christ
Synopsis: Recognise we have all received his grace but
in different ways with different gifts and different ministries,
some specifically to build up the rest of the body, the church.]
(yet each of us has grace
as Christ has given it) But
to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it.
(as prophecy says, he
gifted us when he ascended) This
is why it says: “When he ascended on high, he took many
captives and gave gifts to his people.” [Psa
(he did that after
he had descended to take the full extent of our punishment)
(What does “he ascended” mean except
that he also descended to the lower, earthly regions?
(but now he has ascended
to receive all intended for him) He
who descended is the very one who ascended higher than all the
heavens, in order to fill the whole universe.)
(so he's given ministries
to the church to equip and build up the body, becoming mature,
becoming all God intended it to be) So
Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists,
the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service,
so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach
unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and
become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness
Stability in the body of Christ
Synopsis: As this happens we should feel more secure,
rejecting the deceitful teaching of the enemy and being more and
more secure as we grow in Christ becoming a mature strong body
held together by love.]
(as this happens it creates
a stability in us) Then
we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves,
and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the
cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming.
(so we speak truth in
love and grow in him) Instead,
speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect
the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.
(he's the one from whom
it all grows, knitted together in love) From
him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting
ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does
The way of the Gentiles
Synopsis: No longer live like the unbelieving world lives,
those who are separated from God and left to their own foolish
thinking, going purely by personal desires.]
(so now you mustn't live
as the rest of the world does) So
I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no
longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking.
(they are ignorant and
hard-hearted, separated from God by ignorance) They
are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life
of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening
of their hearts.
(thus they live giving
way to all sorts of desires) Having
lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality
so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, and they are full
The way for the believers
Synopsis: That's not how we live for we have been taught
to put off all those self-centred desires and confusing attitudes,
but instead as part of his body, we are to be remade in Christ's
likeness, living out our lives seeking peace harmony while working
diligently, blessing and forgiving one another and building one
another up as Christ does with us.]
(that's not what you
have learned from us) That,
however, is not the way of life you learned when you heard about
Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that
is in Jesus.
(we taught you to put
off your old life and put on a new Christlike one)
You were taught, with regard to your
former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted
by its deceitful desires; to
be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new
self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
(so don't let lies come
from you, deal only in truth) Therefore
each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your
neighbor, for we are all members of one body.
(if you have cause to
be angry, don't hold on to it and let it fester and grow)
“In your anger
do not sin” [Psa 4:4 (see Septuagint)]:
let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give
the devil a foothold.
(if you have stolen in
the past, no more! Instead work gainfully to bless others)
has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something
useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share
with those in need.
(don't let bad stuff
come in your speech, only what will bless others) Do
not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only
what is helpful for building others up according to their needs,
that it may benefit those who listen.
(and therefore don't
grieve or upset the Holy Spirit who dwells in you) And
do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed
for the day of redemption.
(get rid of all negativity
towards others) Get
rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along
with every form of malice.
(instead be kind, compassionate
& forgiving) Be
kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just
as in Christ God forgave you.
to Chapter 5
to New Testament Contents)