Ephesians 4:1-6
I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called,  with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love,  eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.  There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call—  one Lord, one faith, one baptism,  one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.

To whom do we belong?

How would you answer that question?  If you’re a military wife, you understand what it means to belong to the service.  We can identify with other military wives because of similar experiences and truths.  Verse 1 reminds us that at the heart of being a Christian means we have gladly given up “ownership” of our lives.  Jesus has bought us, given us His Spirit, and is leading us to our new Father.  Our new Lord shapes us, motivates us, teaches us, and defines us. He has a love for us that compares to no other.  He calls us and His love compels us to live the Gospel.

We often ask, “what should we do?” But the real question really is, ” With whom should we be and how?”  We are His.  He is the beauty, wisdom, and power of our calling to be with Him and each other.  All we do flows out of this calling:  “walk with Me”.

In verse 2, Paul tells us the HOW we are to walk out that calling, “with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love,  eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”   Colossians 3:12-13 has something similar to say, “Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, 13 bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. 14 And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. “

God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are the source of unity, so what kind of unity will bring honor to the Lord?

We are commanded to be as He is…

  • love one another (John 13:34–35; 15:12);
  • welcome one another (Rom. 15:7)
  • encourage one another (1 Thess. 5:11)
  • show hospitality to one another (1 Peter 4:9)
  • be kind to one another (Eph. 4:32)
  • outdo one another in showing honor (Rom. 12:10)
  • pray for one another (James 5:16)
  • bear one another’s burdens (Gal. 6:2)
  • not to grumble against one another (James 5:9)
  • serve one another (Gal. 5:13)
  • bear with one another (Col. 3:13)

Unity does not come naturally to us.  Our flesh, the world, and the devil resist trusting and serving the Lord.   All three types of tempters are still at work today:  human cultures are creating divisions; fearful people are being tempted to draw back; others who currently have shallow faith are meeting more subtle temptations of unity in superficial commonalities; and we all know that discipleship takes a lot of time and effort. 

This is why the Lord sends His Holy Spirit to dwell within each of His reborn children.  Paul knows this and reminds us we must “maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”  If we were to look ahead to verse 11, Paul hones in on the goal – “for the work of the ministry, for the building up of the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God.”

Topics To Consider

The Culture Rules

  • Ephesians 4:11-16 – We are commanded to live out our faith in ways that are counter-cultural, crushing our selfish natures and demanding intentional approaches toward Love.
  • Matthew 28:16-20 – We are to live with purpose making disciples from Truth. We are created to bring the Gospel to Community but we are not intentional.
  • Micah 6:8 – Do justice, love kindness, And walk humbly with your God.

Fearful People Without Purpose

  • Hebrews 12:1-2 – We must grow in endurance.
  • Philippians 4:6-7 – We are anxious in most everything.
  • 2 Corinthians 9:24-27, Matt 6:19-21, Deut 10:12, Col. 3: 12-17 – We must live purposefully.
  • Psalm 51 – We are encouraged by His wisdom and joy.
  • Ephesians 5:15-21 – Live by the Spirit and submit to one another.

Shallow Faith

  • Mark 4:14-20 – The Word must be retained.
  • Ephesians 4:11-16 – We are to live with a new Truth that equips us to build up the Body.
  • Luke 6:47-49 – We must build on firm foundation.
  • Genesis 1-3 – Our worldview must come from a God who creates with purpose.

Discipleship/Mentoring

  • Matt 28:18-20 – We disciple in His name.
  • 1 Thess. 5:10-12, Heb. 2:13, Heb. 10:24-26, Col. 3:12-17 – Encourage and build each other up.

Study Resources

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“Study Resources” are suggestions for related Bible studies and worship songs through the lens of this theme in corporate and small group settings.

Program Resources

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“Program Resources” are ideas and elements to help spark your creative juices to teach the Word of God to your PWOC through the lens of themes in a corporate setting.

Back to Basics
Common Convictions

Created For Community
One Common Care For Each Other

Borrowed from the Fruit of Hope Theme

What Brand Are You Wearing?
A Common Confidence

The Cornerstone
Fitted together In Him

To The World
The Gift Of ONE Gospel
Coming Soon

Retreat Resource

Helpful Articles

Helpful Videos

Walk Worthy Of your Calling

Adapting to the Culture…Or Not

Overview of Ephesians

Overview of Colossians

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