(24 verses, 3:00 to read)
What I am about to READ
Paul’s final instructions to the Ephesians, fighting in spiritual warfare, and peace in Christ.
MARK and LEARN
1-3: God promises that things will go well for children who obey their parents out of respect and love for Him.
4: Only fathers are mentioned; fathers are the heads of their households. God wants Christian fathers not to exasperate their children, but to bring them up in the Lord.
5: “Slaves”— shouldn’t Paul tell slaves to rebel or fight for their freedom? We must remember that slavery was an established institution in Paul’s day. Throughout history Christians have played a large part in abolishing slavery, but Paul was dealing with the situation as it existed.
5-8: Paul encourages slaves. He reminds them that they’re actually slaves of Christ. By serving their masters honorably, they are in fact serving the Lord. God will reward them, even if their earthly masters may not.
9: Masters and slaves are both serving the same Master – Jesus Christ. There’s no difference between a master and slave in God’s justifying sight.
10-12: Spiritual Battle. Our battle is not against flesh and blood but against powerful spiritual forces. The devil is constantly scheming to place a wedge between us and God. He will stop at nothing to destroy your faith and pull you away from the freedom you have in Christ. Do not rely on yourself in this battle against spiritual forces; rely on the Lord and His mighty strength.
13: We need the full armor of God to fight against the devil. We need God’s protection; His weapons. If a soldier is without even one piece of his armor it could prove fatal. In the same way a missing piece of God’s armor in our battle with Satan could prove fatal.
14-17: Without the truth we are at the mercy of Satan’s lies. Without Christ’s righteousness we cannot defend ourselves against Satan’s lies. Zeal for the gospel of peace keeps us alert for ways to attack Satan and gives us speed to avoid his attacks. The shield of faith enables us to resist the doubts into which Satan tries to lead us. The helmet of salvation protects us against the many kinds of blows by which Satan would defeat us and lead us to hell. With the sword of the Spirit we can fight Satan, for we are not dependent on our own skill but on the Spirit’s truth and power.
18-20: Paul urges us to pray continually, that God would open our mouths to speak His precious Gospel to a world that so desperately needs it.
21-24: Paul concludes the letter by vouching for Tychicus, and granting peace to all hearers through the proclamation of the steadfast love of God in Christ.
The battle belongs to the Lord! Take comfort in the mighty strength of God. The Lord arms His soldiers in order to work through them. Being adorned with the full armor of God, we are free to serve and love our neighbors without fear. The full armor of God frees us to speak His word to world stumbling in darkness.
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Pastor Kevin Zellers, Jr.