Summary: In describing the believers walk we see its 1) Call (Ephesians 4:1), 2) Characteristics (Ephesians 4:2-3), and its 3) Cause (Ephesians 4:4-6).
For months, the world’s news crews have needed to cope with a bizarre Internet-inspired trend of bystanders screaming a vulgar phrase into live microphones. But on Tuesday, an Ontario power company employee was fired after he was seen championing the phrase during a live CityNews broadcast. After an exhaustive online hunt discovered that the man was a Hydro One engineer whose $106,510.50 salary had earned him a spot on the Ontario Sunshine List, the utility announced Tuesday it had fired Shawn Simoes, an assistant network management engineer, for violating the company’s code of conduct.
Social clubs, sports teams, business and the Church itself, have codes of conduct to regulate behavior. The idea is to have a particular standard of expectation that would match the public message of the organization. Unfortunately for the visible Church in general too many Christians are glad to have the spiritual security, blessings, and promises of the gospel but have too little sense of responsibility in conforming to its standards and obeying its commands.
In the first three chapters of Ephesians Paul has set forth the believer’s position with all the blessings, honors, and privileges of being a child of God. In the next three chapters he gives the consequent obligations and requirements of being His child, in order to live out salvation in accordance with the Father’s will and to His glory. The first three chapters set forth truth about the believer’s identity in Christ, and the last three call for the practical response. Capters 1–3 provide the theological basis for Christian unity, then chapters 4–6 contain the practical instruction for its maintenance. Unity has been established (the indicative); now it becomes the duty of the believers to strengthen and maintain unity in their fellowship (the imperative).( Patzia, A. G. (2011). Ephesians, Colossians, Philemon (p. 228). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.)
In Ephesians 4:1–6 Paul appeals to believers to walk worthy of their high position in Jesus Christ. In describing that walk he discusses its 1) Call (Ephesians 4:1), 2) Characteristics (Ephesians 4:2-3), and its 3) Cause (Ephesians 4:4-6).
1) The Call to the Worthy Walk (Ephesians 4:1)
Ephesians 4:1 [4:1]I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, (ESV)
As in other Pauline letters, the doctrine expounded in the earlier part is to be worked out according to the practical guidance given in the later part, the transition from the one to the other being marked by the adverb “therefore. (cf. Rom. 12:1; 1 Cor. 4:16; Col. 3:5.)” As members of the new humanity, the readers have already been reminded of the purpose to which God has called them: the hope of their calling (Eph. 1:18) requires lives which are in keeping with their high destiny (Bruce, F. F. (1984). The Epistles to the Colossians, to Philemon, and to the Ephesians (p. 333). Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.)
But, before giving his appeal, Paul once again refers to himself as a prisoner of the Lord (see 3:1). By mentioning his imprisonment he gently reminds his readers that he knows the worthy Christian walk can be costly and that he has paid considerable cost himself because of his obedience to the Lord.
• By far the prevalent presentation of Christianity in western circles from evangelism, books and other media sources is for immediate befits from Christianity. It is presented as the solution to your marriage, dealing with your kids, your job, health, wealth, mental state and on and on. Christianity can fix all the things I have just mentioned but what must be understood is that all those things are secondary to the glory of God. It is the height of irony to represent Christianity as the immediate solution to these problems, for in its name, Christianity bears the name of Christ, who was misunderstood and persecuted.
Paul made no apology for pleading with people to do what he knew was right. For him to urge/entreat (Parakaleoµ ) his hearers/readers if for them to call to one’s side, with the idea of wanting to help or be helped. It connotes intense feeling, strong desire. In this context it is not simply a request but a plea, an imploring or begging. Paul was not giving suggestions to the Ephesians but divine standards, standards apart from which they could not live in a way that fittingly corresponded to their being children of God. Paul never exhorted on a take–it–or–leave–it basis. He could not rest until all those given into his spiritual care walked in a manner worthy of the calling to which (they had) been called. God’s gracious calling not only bestows great privileges on them; it also carries with it solemn responsibilities. His election and predestination of them for adoption into his family (1:4, 5), together with his preparing good works beforehand for them to walk in (2:10), do not remove the responsibility of their heeding the apostolic injunction (O’Brien, P. T. (1999). The letter to the Ephesians (p. 275). Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.).