Done. Now live.

Ephesians is a letter that can be divided into two main sections. Section one contains chapters 1-3 and section two contains chapters 4-6. Chapters 1-3 are built around knowing “what is the hope to which he has called you” (Eph. 1.18), while chapters 4-6 are built around living “in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called.” (Eph. 4.1) In other words, chapters 1-3 are speaking toward what God has done through Jesus Christ and chapters 4-6 contain the call, the instruction to live in light of what God has done. John Stott says it this way: the writer “turns from exposition to exhortation, from what God has done (in the indicative) to what we must be and do (in the imperative), from doctrine to duty…from mind-stretching theology to its down-to-earth, concrete implications in everyday living.” So how are we to live in light of what Christ has done?

Paul's first order of business is to speak toward unity in the church. He wants to begin by building a foundation on Jesus Christ alone. It is obvious that there are many gifts, many personalities, many preferences, many __________(fill in the blank) when you gather many people together. But in the midst of those differences, there must be some commonality, there must be a single foundation and focus. How many times does Paul use the word 'ONE' in chapter four? Why do you think that is?

Go back and read Jesus' prayer in John, chapter 17. Do you see any connection here?

Here's the deal - God has given the church the responsibility of carrying/displaying/living the message of Ephesians 1-3. The most important truth people can know has been handed to the church. You and I carry the truth that holds eternity. We are a part of the most important thing going on in the world today. Unity is essential - it is a non-negotiable.

Where have you seen unity in the church disrupted? What happened? How can we, as a local church, better unify ourselves in carrying this life-giving mystery?


  1. "In Essentials, Unity; in Non-essentials, Liberty; in All Things, Charity," from St Augustine."

    The call to the saints is to work together as the Church Universal, as the Body of Christ to strive to achieve Kingdom purposes. In my view this begins with recognition of our divinely appointed purpose: To Glorify God (I Peter 4:11) and to enjoy Him forever. (Psalm 73:25 – among many others). If individually we understand our purpose, we being to understand more fully the purpose and mission of the Church. In that context St Augustine’s admonition to remain united in the essentials of the faith, to apply “liberty” in that which is non-essential and to apply “Charity” (read “LOVE”) in all things should bind us together to a view of purposeful and cohesive (read, “loving”) living amongst one another. This is what will keep the Saints together as one, and (by God’s grace) prevent separation and strife. By applying this as an overlay to daily living, I think we are better prepared (spiritually, emotionally and psychologically) to live life in unity.

    Finally, I came across this scripture today, which underscores that the application of God delivered wisdom (heavenly delivered, not natural man delivered), will go a great distance to achieving unity: (James 3:17-18)

    ”But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness.”


  2. 4:11 tells us you guys are a gift to us from Christ. 12 says it's your job to equip us to do His work and build up the church until we 13 "come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God's Son..." that we grow up.
    No pressure.... ; )
    Really, you guys are a gift to us and I'm so thankful for you!