Summary: The Christian walk is God’s plan for edifying the Body of Christ as gifted Christian leaders equip the saints for their work of ministry and as converted Christians use their spiritual gifts.
Rev. Dr. Otis T. McMillan
The Christian Walk
Key Verses: Ephesians 4:1-32; 5:1-21; 6:10-19
Proposition: The Christian walk is God’s plan for edifying the Body of Christ as gifted Christian leaders equip the saints for their work of ministry and as converted Christians use their spiritual gifts.
1. The Christian walk is first and foremost a walk in unity. (Ephesians 4:1-6)
a. A walk in unity requires a deep level of humility. (1-2)
b. A walk in unity requires hard work. (3)
c. A walk in unity requires a deep commitment to the things we have in common. (4-6)
2. The Christian walk is a walk in spiritual maturity (Ephesians 4:7-16)
a. A walk in maturity involves understanding that Christ ascended on high to give the church power and spiritual gifts. (7-10)
2) Christ was seated at the right hand of God. (Acts 2:33, 38-39; Col. 3:1; Heb 1:3)
3) Christ was highly exalted. (Eph. 1:20-23; Phil. 2:9-11)
b. A walk in maturity involves understanding that Christ descended into the lower parts of the earth. (8-10)
1) Christ descended in order to destroy him who had power over death, the devil.
2) Christ descended in order to release those bound by the fear of death.
3) Christ descended in order to lead captivity captive.
c. A walk in maturity involves understanding that Christ gave gifts to mankind. (7, 8)
1) Christ gives the gift of the Holy Spirit to saints. (Acts 1:8, 2:33, 38-39)
2) Christ gives spiritual gifts to saints. (Ro 12:6-8; 1 Co. 12:4-11, 28-30; Eph. 4:7-11)
3) Christ gives gifted leaders to equip the saints for the work of ministry. (11, 12)
• Apostles are those with the gift to plant churches and provide oversight.
• Prophets are those with the gift to speak God’s special message to the church.
• Evangelists are those with the gift to share the gospel and train others to do so.
• Pastors are those with the gift to care for souls and nurture them to maturity.
• Teachers are those with the gift to teach the saints to obey God’s word.
d. A walk in maturity involves understanding how gifted leaders equip for the work of ministry. (15, 16)
1) Gifted leaders must help the saints:
• Discover their spiritual gift. (1 Cor. 12:4)
• Develop their spiritual gift.
• Use their spiritual gift properly.
2) Gifted leaders must assist the saints:
• Discovering their individual ministry (1 Cor. 12:5)
• Fulfilling their individual ministries
3) Gifted leaders must assist the saints with their operations. (1 Cor. 12:6)
• Discover their particular operation.
• Function in their operation properly.
e. A walk in maturity involves understanding that saints must be properly discipled. (Eph. 4:13-16)
1) Saints must be brought into the unity of the faith, the knowledge of the Son of God, and to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.
2) Saints must be nurtured in order to grow to maturity in Christ.
3) Saints must be nurtured in order to avoid the pitfalls of immaturity.
• Spiritual instability
• Spiritual Vulnerability
• Spiritual gullibility
4) Saints must demonstrate their maturity in their communication. (15)
• Speaking or testifying (sharing the faith)
• Speaking honestly (speak the truth)
• Speaking graciously (speak the truth in love)
5) Saints must demonstrate their maturity by faithfully doing their part. (16)
• The Body of Christ is held together by what each joint supplies.
• The Body of Christ grows as each part does its share.
3. The Christian walk is a walk in the newness of life (Eph. 4:17-24)
a. A walk in the newness of life must avoid walking in the old patterns of the past life. (17, 18)
• Avoid walking in the vanity of their old minds
• Avoid ignorance that alienated from the life of God
• Avoid past feelings have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.
• Avoid deceitful lusts associated with the old man and the former life (22)
b. A walk in the newness of life must follow the teachings of Christ. (20, 21)
• Follow the example of Christ (Lifestyle)
• Follow the teachings of Christ (Conduct)
c. A walk in the newness of life is walking with a renewed mind. (23)
1) Things to put on: the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
• Honesty, truthfulness (25)
• Forgiveness (26, 32)
• Generosity (28)
• Minister grace unto the hearers (29)
• Be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another (32)
2) Things to put off:
• Lying (25)
• Anger that leads to sin (26)
• Compromising with the devil (27)
• Stealing (28)