40 Days of study

A human being lives, but he is given life.

Ephesians 4:17-32

Ephesians 4:17-32

New King James Version (NKJV)

The New Man

17 This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind, 18 having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart; 19 who, being past feeling, have given themselves over to lewdness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.

20 But you have not so learned Christ, 21 if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: 22 that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, 23 and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24 and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.

Do Not Grieve the Spirit

25 Therefore, putting away lying, “Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,” for we are members of one another. 26 “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, 27 nor give place to the devil. 28 Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need. 29 Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.

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My Thoughts:

  1. Let’s start with (v. 17) we read “This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind”
    1. “that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind”. We see Paul changing his direction to Christian behavior telling the church that even though we are part of the world, the worldly ideas should not live in us, this brings us back to (Eph. 2:1-6).
    2. With this said we should not cut ourselves off from the world, we were given the commission by Christ in (Matt. 28:18-20) to go out in to the world and testify to His love and grace for mankind.
  2. (v. 22-24) Paul says “that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.
    1. “that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts” The old self must be put off, because it is being corrupted by sinful desires and will otherwise lead us back into sin.  Simultaneously, we must put on the new self and be “made new in the attitude” of our minds.  Our responsibility is to cast off the old and put on the new, while God renews us in the attitude our minds.  If we fail to carry out our responsibilities, our old habits can block the renewal process.   The result will be that we live as “carnal Christians,” divided in heart and backsliding into our old habits. Remember all we need to do is ask Christ for Help in our struggles (Matt. 7:7-8) (Mark 9:23) .
  3. I would like to finish with (vv. 31, 32) “Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.”
    1. “be kind to one another” It is perhaps human nature to want to know “what’s in it for us” when we set out to do something. Here are some wonderful spiritual and physical benefits:

i.      We will “see” God in a whole new way (Hebrews 12:14)

ii.      Protection from slavery to sin (Proverbs 22:5)

iii.      God manifests himself to us (John 14:21)

iv.      Renewed mind (Ephesians 4:22-24)

v.      We enjoy God’s favor, blessing and pleasures (Psalm 119:1-4)

vi.      God fills us with joy and peace as we trust in him (Romans 15:13)

Today I would like to leave you with an illustration that I think goes very well with today’s topic;

A young boy knocked at the studio door of an Italian artist who had died. When it was opened, he explained, “Please, madam, will you give me the master’s brush?” The boy, who had a passionate longing to be an artist, wished for the great master’s touch. The woman placed the brush in the boy’s hand and invited him to try. He made a supreme effort but soon found he could paint no better with that brush than with his own.

The woman then said, “Remember, you cannot paint like the great master unless you have his spirit.” So too, people who have never been born again are doomed to disappointment and failure when they attempt to live in a way that pleases God. Without the indwelling Holy Spirit, they cannot do it.  Perhaps you have experienced the new birth and you have Christ’s Spirit living within you, yet you feel so powerless. The reason may be that though you have all of His Spirit, His Spirit does not have all of you. All your ambitions and desires must be submitted to His control.

The greatness of the power and effectiveness of your service for Christ is in exact proportion to the measure of your surrender to Christ. –Henry G. Bosch

Christ is seen most clearly when we remain in the background.

Personal Reflection and Discussion

  1. How does today’s devotion speak to you?
  2. We have talked about the infilling of the Holy Spirit in past devotions. Have you seen a difference in your life since asking for this infilling?
  3. What other things do you see in the text?

Prayer Activities

  1. Call your Partner and discuss this devotional.
  2. Continue to have a prayer list and let the new people know you are praying for them.
  3. Pray with them and ask for the following;
    1. For God to bring understanding of Him to your life.
    2. For God to strengthen your faith in Him.
    3. For the individuals on your pray list.
  4. For today use the following Bible verse in your prayer (Proverbs 29:2). Maybe give this one a little more thought today.

About bobh6

I am Seventh-day Adventist pastor in the Texas Panhandle

5 comments on “Ephesians 4:17-32

  1. Rosi
    August 16, 2011

    Verse 26 says “Be angry and do not sin” When I first red that many years ago I had no clue what it meant. I have learned since then that it is alright if we get angry as Christians. It is what we get angry about and how we deal with that anger that is important here. We can respond with controlled anger at injustice and sin but we should never let the anger consume us. To many people are angry at the world. These people really need our prayers. Also verse 30 is so important. We should never push the Holy Spirit away.We need the Holy Spirit to indwell in us. The Holy Spirit in us is how we get through every minute in the day. This world is to sinful and we must have help that is freely given.

    • bobh6
      August 16, 2011

      Very good Rosie, I agree with you. If we let Christ live in us, anger cannot have control over us. But I see more and more people today with anger issues than I ever have. What soes that say about the times we live in?

  2. Amalia
    August 17, 2011

    This is the “secret” to a truely happy heart, Christ in yours. We could go through all the motions but if it’s not the real thing, there’s something missing, what a difference and liberation it is to know it’s Him in us and not of our own. How wonderful that this is in the Bible. Just imagine going through life trying to live like the Master and missing it entirely. This is the self help verse. It shows us what the right spirit should look like.

    • bobh6
      August 18, 2011

      That why our works cannot save us, it is through our faith and letting Christ in to our hearts and transferring ourselves to be like him and then and only then will we be like him. At that point our works will mirror His works.

  3. buy provera online
    August 26, 2011

    Really great article with very interesting information. You might want to follow up to this topic!?! 2012

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This entry was posted on August 16, 2011 by in 40 days, Ephesians, Holy Spirit and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

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