“That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in [his] kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.”
The Grace Of Unity: Ephesians 4:1-6
1) I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called,
2) With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;
3) Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
4) [There is] one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;
5) One Lord, one faith, one baptism,
6) One God and Father of all, who [is] above all, and through all, and in you all.
With this devotional, we are beginning the second division of the book of Ephesians. Previously, we have looked at “Reflections Of His Grace Revealed” (chaps 1-3). It that section, Paul revealed to us the gracious works of the Lord in the lives of His chosen people.
In this new section “Reflections Of His Grace Applied” (chaps 4-6) Paul will be explaining to us the practical effects of God’s grace in the lives of His people.
- The Grace Of Unity (4:1-6)
- The Grace Of Maturity (4:7-16)
- The Grace Of Renewal (4:17-32)
- The Grace Of Imitation (5:1-14)
- The Grace Of Wisdom (5:15-21)
- The Grace Of Relationships (5:22-33)
- The Grace Of Authority/Submission (6:1-9)
- The Grace Of Preparedness (6:10-21)
The first effect of God’s grace we will be looking at is the grace of UNITY (4:1-6). This is a very basic outline of this section of Scripture:
I. The responsibility of the Lord’s call upon His people (vs 1)
II. Characteristics of the grace of unity (vs 2-3)
III. Godly examples of unity found in the Lord and His people (vs 4-6)
After explaining the importance of seeking unity, Paul now shares with us seven examples of unity that God has given to us…
(Eph 4:4) There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;
In our text this morning we will learn of three of these examples…
There is one body,
The local church body is a unified assembly of many differing members, gifts and ministries that unite to serve the Lord in a very powerful way.
“For the body is not one member, but many. If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? If the whole body [were] an eye, where [were] the hearing? If the whole [were] hearing, where [were] the smelling? But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him. And if they were all one member, where [were] the body? But now [are they] many members, yet but one body. And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you.” (1 Corinthians 12:14-21)
and one Spirit,
The Holy Spirit is one Spirit yet performs many differing ministries that are unified to enable Christ (during His first coming) and God’s people to minister for Him.
“And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;” (Isaiah 11:1-2)
even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;
The “hope of our calling” is the eternal inheritance that is awaiting us (Col 1:4-6). Although our inheritance involves many differing aspects, it is a unified hope that will be received by all Christians. In 1 Peter 1:3-4, we have four major aspects to our inheritance being mentioned…
“Blessed [be] the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you,” (1 Peter 1:3-4)
Four great aspects of our inheritance are:
1. incorruptible – 1 Corinthians 15:52-54 – receipt of glorified bodies
2. undefiled – Revelation 21:27 – separation from the presence of sin
3. fadeth not away – 1 Peter 5:4 – eternal rewards
4. reserved in heaven – Revelation 3:4-5 – guarantee of acceptance into God’s presence through work of Christ
Paul had begun to show us several examples of unity that is worked by God on our behalf. They include:
1. Unity within a local assembly
2. Unity of the workings of the Holy Spirit
3. Unity of our eternal inheritance
ALL of these come to us entirely as gifts of God’s grace. May we all seek for peace and unity keeping in mind the wonderful graces of unity that He has worked on our behalf.
May we all get a clearer picture of our Lord and Savior, and the great grace He has shown to us. Let us be always watchful to keep His great acts of grace on our behalf in the center of our attention… In doing so, may we be motivated to LOVE Him more, APPRECIATE Him more and SERVE Him more!
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