Ephesians 4:15-16 –The body is fitted together by the Head and made for growing up and attaining shalom. Part 2
length: 69:21 - taught on Jan, 18 2022
Tuesday January 18, 2022
We must grow up in time in order to experience God’s love, joy, and peace in our marriages, families, churches, and communities. Only in time is there an enemy who has made war against it.
God did not create and plan human history without a grand design. Man is at the center and man’s faith matters greatly. There is much more to the plan of history than separating men into elect and judged, though that is an important part.
There are many ideas developed by people for motivating believers to grow up, especially in light of the promise that all of us will either come to a full knowledge of Christ, or (in case it is true that none of us can arrive at complete knowledge of infinite Christ) we will all move towards that fulness for all of eternity. We must always be careful to ensure that our ideas are based only on clear biblical data. We must also remember that there are mysteries in the scripture that lead us to naturally ask questions, and for some of them, there are no clear answers.
The new creature called to holiness in a holy community, if he will find peace and love and joy in the midst of an idolatrous world, will have to witness the power of faith.
My point is that if we were first introduced to the way of the kingdom of God and made fit for it and we had no rebelling flesh, nor sinful, idolatrous world, but only perfect heaven in perfect bodies, would we be able to see the power of faith? All believers will either see it or not. No one gets saved or born-again in eternity.
One aspect of human history that God has interwoven is the path to shalom or peace. The concept of shalom is much deeper than what it may look like on the surface. The nation of Israel had a chance to accept it and therefore make shalom the environment of their tribes and nation. They failed. So far in history, the church has the greatest chance to make shalom their world. The church has failed many times, and all for the reason that we have read in EPH 4:14. However, each local assembly, and each family blessed with believers, has the opportunity to make shalom their world. Jesus will make shalom His world at His second coming and all over the earth for one-thousand years.
Knowing the person and work of Christ gives full motivation to grow up and establish peace through love.
If we learn of Christ’s person and work, and we’re not motivated to establish peace in our own souls as well as our relationships, there is a great disconnect between what we think we know and what we actually do.
And working like a team pulling overflowing nets into our boats, we learn as we go and we also help one another (equip) and our whole church is continually built up.
The nature and ministry of the church should be a trailer of coming attractions for all to see.
“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how will it be made salty again? It is good for nothing anymore, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men. 14 You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do men light a lamp, and put it under the peck-measure, but on the lampstand; and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”
When men see that God is the source of all good and they perform that good by His power, He is glorified as the Father of lights.
Hence, we have to grow up. God does not need anyone to glorify Him, but He has given us the opportunity to think and live in a harmonious relationship with Him, and the good that comes from that will glorify Him and not us. Still, God is going to glorify every believer, and that because they are the bride of Christ in union with Him.
EPH 4:15-16 but living and being the truth in love, we are to grow up in all things into Him, who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being (continually) fitly joined and knit together by that which every joint (believer) fully supplies …
As a result, we are no longer to be children [spiritual infants], tossed here and there by waves, and carried about [twirled around] by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming [method of getting believers off the right path and onto a wrong one]; 15 but speaking the truth [living and being the truth] in love, we are to grow up in all aspects [things] into Him, who is the head, even Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, being [continually] fitted and held together [fitly joined and knit together] by that which every joint [connected believer] supplies [fully supplies], according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.
“joint” is Paul keeping the body analogy going. The joints of the body fits the imagery of being fitly joined and knit together.
The joints therefore refer to the points of contact that the Lord has knit together - each believer in contact with others in the body.
The one believer supplies the next believer to whom he is in contact and their ministries furnish and build up the body’s inward life through a communion wherein each single part shares, creating a tie that binds one Christian soul to another and serves to nourish the common life of grace.
Each believer has a ministry in which they have works that serve, or equip others, and in this sentence, Paul uses a word that means to fully supply. “Every joint fully supplies, according to the energy or power of each individual part.”
“supplies” - epichoregias = fully (epi) supply. Originally: to lead a chorus in Greek theater, and then later: to defray the expenses of a chorus.
The prefix “epi” intensifies the noun.
We are each to fully supply the other members of the body of Christ that we happen to be in contact with. We don’t supply everything that they want. We supply what work or service is in our power to do, and that is proper and profitable to do, and we do so in love. If there is something another thinks they need, but that we cannot give, both parties are to agree to leave the need, if it is legitimate, in the hands of God. If another thinks they have a need, but we deem it sinful, we serve them by not fulfilling it, while still considering what it is that we should supply to them. We have to grow up in all aspects unto Christ so that in the many scenarios that we will face with others, we will possess wisdom which will give us a knack or insight into what is good and right to do, or in some cases, not do.