Summary: The maturity of the church

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Ephesians 4:16-18

August 15, 2012

The main idea so far is that the church of Christ is one body under one Head. This body has gifts to build it up while we wait until “we all come in the unity of the faith and knowledge of the Son of God.” But in the meantime, there are many who would trick and deceive us, so we must speak the truth in love that we “may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ.”

16From whom

The Greek word for “from” is ἐκ (ek). It means “out of.” The body is growing up into Christ. “Out of” whom,

the whole body fitly joined together

The Greek is συναρμολογέω (synarmologeo). Think of our word “synergy.” It means to draw something closely together. Remember that there was a dividing wall between Jew and Gentile (2:15). Think of a building being assembled.

and compacted

This word is similar, but it’s not the same. Compacted is συμβιβάζω (symbibazo). It means to gather or unite or knit together. It’s used in Acts 9:22 where it says that Paul confounded the Jews proving that Jesus is Christ. “Fitly joined” is all the pieces of a building coming together to make one structure, and “compacted” is like being united in mind or thought.

by that which every joint supplieth,

“Joint” is ἁφή (haphe). It means “bond.” All these bonds (:3-6, 13) supply us with all we need to grow up into Christ.

according to the effectual working

This is superhuman power: I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God; 26Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: 27To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: 28Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: 29Whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily (Col. 1:25-29).

in the measure of every part,

That which every part of the body contributes,

maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

Skip forward a little bit to 5:29—“For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church.” Why do we walk in humility with gentleness? Because we’re one body caring for itself. And in this way, we’re different from the Gentiles and from our old way:

17This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord,

This is a solemn testimony,

that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity

Vanity is “devoid of truth”

of their mind,

Faith and knowledge make a difference. To walk in vanity is a contradiction to the truth which we claim to profess. They don’t know it because,

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