Summary: 19th in an exposition of Ephesians dealing with our humble worthy walk.
“Walk in Humility”
I. Our Wealth and Worth In Christ 1-3
II. Our Walk in Christ 4-6
A. Walk in Unity
1. Exhortation to walk worthy of our calling 1
1 Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called
Paul's use of "therefore" connects the second half of Ephesians to the first half. The reason for his exhortation to a worthy walk could either be tied to the immediate context or actually to the whole first half of his letter.
If we link it to the whole letter it could look something like this.
Since God has blessed us with every spiritual blessing having been specially chosen, purposefully adopted, freely redeemed and forgiven, spiritually enlightened, surely considered God's inheritance, securely sealed, made alive, raised, and seated with Christ, rescued from alienation and brought near to God as full citizens in his kingdom, beloved children in his family, living stones in his Temple…walk worthy.
Since God is going to do exceedingly beyond all that we could ask or think according to the power that works with in us…walk worthy.
Since God will be glorified in the church; his new community…walk worthy.
Along with great blessing comes great responsibility. May our way of life reflect our wealth of blessing. Paul could have issued a command on the basis of his authority as an apostle.
Rather, Paul encouraged life-change on the basis of their great blessing and on his sacrificial service to them as a prisoner for Christ. Rather than an authoritative command, Paul offered an emotional appeal.
Urge, exhort, comfort, encourage, desire, pray, entreat
Paul appealed to their heart on the basis of his character rather than his credentials. His appeal emerged out of the fact that he was already living a worthy walk and suffering in prison because of it. The term “walk” translates two words, to walk and around or about. It meant to conduct one’s self, order one’s behavior, live one’s life.
He urged them to live a life “worthy of their calling”. “Worthy” means equal weight, worthy, proper, in balance. We get our word “axiom” from this root term.
Greek philosophers considered an axiom as a claim which could be seen to be true without any need for proof.
Paul urges us to live in such a way that no further proof is needed to verify we are true followers of Jesus. Jesus said the world would recognize His disciples by their love for one another. A believer’s behavior should accurately correspond with a believer’s blessing.
Even Jesus said, "He who is forgiven much loves much."
Paul used the word "calling" to refer to the call of Jesus to be full citizens in his kingdom, beloved sons in his family, living stones in his Temple. We have been called as members of God’s new unified community of creatures committed to passionately loving God and each other. A calling is a life purpose, a reason for being, a life vocation. We must never let the wonder of the fact that God called us out of darkness into his glorious light drift very far from the forefront of our thinking. It was one of Paul’s prayer requests in chapter one.
“Realize the Hope of His calling.”
Paul urged these followers of Jesus to live a life consistent with gracious calling of God. He told the Philippians to work out their glorious salvation with fear and trembling. Would we live any differently if all of a sudden we were invited to become CEO for a large prestigious corporation? We have been called to represent the greatest organization ever with equally great resources and privilege and Paul insists that our way of life should reflect the exalted nature of that high and holy calling.
Does how we dress, what we talk about, our activities, our ethics, our mannerisms, how we treat one another reflect our high calling as ambassadors of God’s kingdom? This isn't the only place Paul calls for a life style change that reflects our core change.
10 walk (live) in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. Colossians 1:10
6 Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, Colossians 2:6
12 we exhorted each one of you and encouraged you and charged you to walk in a manner worthy of God, who calls you into his own kingdom and glory. 1 Thessalonians 2:12
27 Let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, Phil 1:27