Stand Therefore

Ephesians 6:14-15 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace 

‘Having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness. The sevenfold Christian armour: Loins girded about with truth. The breastplate of righteousness (6:14). Feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace (6:15). The shield of faith (6:16). The helmet of salvation. The sword of the Spirit, the Word of God (6:17). Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit (6:18).

‘Loins girt about with truth’ – to be girdled with the truth around the loins (John 14:7) will always help us to keep our balance – when no lie can up-end our beliefs. The truth will always refer to Christ which is the Truth (gospel) and He alone can set us free (John 8:32).

‘Breastplate of righteousness’ – also called the breastplate of faith and love (1Thes. 5:8). Righteousness is the state one should be in to automatically be covered in God’s breastplate; to be righteous is to be in right standing or to be without sin (Rom. 6; 1Jn. 3).  

‘Feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace’ – to be a doer of God’s Word (Jas. 1:22-26) is to walk according to that which set an example for others as we have received from Christ (1Pet. 2:21-23). The gospel will bring either God’s peace (John 14:27; Php. 4:6) or it will bring division (Mat. 10:34-39) as it reveals the intentions of the heart (Matt. 10:12-15; Heb. 4:12). Those who reject it will be rejected (Lk. 12:9).

‘Preparation’ [Greek: hetoimasia] being prepared; readiness. It is the gospel of making peace with God and of readiness to meet Him.

To Stand

Ephesians 6:13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 

‘Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day.’ Because you have such enemies (6:12), be clothed with the armour of God. It will make you invulnerable and victorious if you choose to stay in this state of awareness.

‘Whole armour’ Two kinds of armour:

[1] Defensive armour for protection: (1) The helmet [Greek: perikephalaia] for the head, of various forms embossed with the company emblem; (2) The girdle [Greek: zoma] for the loins to brace the armour tight against the body, and support daggers, swords and other weapons; (3) The breastplate [Greek: thorax] in two parts – one to cover the breast and the other to cover the back to protect the vital organs of the body. It extended down to the legs; (4) Greaves [Greek: knemides] to cover the shins. A kind of solea was often used to protect the feet from rocks, thorns, etc.; (5) The shield [Greek: thureos] to protect the body from blows and cuts.

[2] Offensive armour for conquest: The sword [Greek: machaira] to destroy the enemy and bring his surrender. Besides the sword, other weapons of offence were used – the spear, lance, battle-axe, club, bow and arrows, and sling

‘Having done all to stand’ – A military phrase; having conquered all, stand, ready to do battle again (6:11).

Put On

Ephesians 6:11-12 Put on the whole armour of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. 

‘Put on the whole armour of God’ – God equipped us for battle so that we can be in right standing and ready for warfare at all times.

‘Armour’ [Greek: panoplia] full armour of a heavily armed soldier, described in Ephesians 6:13-17.

‘That you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.’ Three great blessings of the armour of God: The ability to stand against all enemies (6:11-14). The ability to withstand all attacks (6:13). The ability to quench every fiery dart of satan (6:16). We, therefore, have no excuse to fall to his plans, wiles and attacks.

‘Wiles’ [Greek: methodeias] methods – the different means, plans, and schemes used to deceive, entrap, enslave, and ruin the souls of men. A man’s method of damning his soul.

‘Wrestle’ [Greek: pale] wrestle. It refers to warfare in general between saints and spirit rebels who are against God.

‘Not against flesh and blood’ – we are not in battle with human beings, even though they can be the paws through which the enemy operates, hence one can be a stumbling block to others (Matt. 18:6).

‘Against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.’ Four kinds of spirit rebels are noted here: Principalities [Greek: archas] chief rulers or beings of the highest rank and order in satan’s kingdom. Powers [Greek: exousias] authorities, those who derive their power from and execute the will of the chief rulers. Rulers of the darkness of this world [Greek: kosmokratoras] world-rulers of the darkness of this age, pertaining to governments. Spiritual wickedness in high places [Greek: pneumatika, tes and ponerias] spiritual wickedness, that of the wicked spirits of satan in the heavenlies (6:12; 1:21; Col. 1:16-18; 2:10).

Be Strong in the Lord

Ephesians 6:10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. 

‘Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.’ Having laid before you your high calling and the great doctrines of the gospel, I will now show you the enemies that will oppose you and how you can overcome them (6:10-18).

‘Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.’ Twelve commands for saints: Be strong in the Lord (6:10). Be strong in His power (6:10). Put on the whole armour of God (6:11). Stand (6:13-14). Have your loins girded with truth (6:14). Put on the breastplate of righteousness (6:14). Have your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace (6:15). Take the shield of faith (6:16). Take the helmet of salvation (6:17). Take the sword of the Spirit (6:17). Pray in the Spirit (6:18). Be watchful in prayer (6:18).

‘Strong’ [Greek: endunamoo] to acquire strength. Translated “strengthen” (Php. 4:13; 2Tim. 4:17); “enable” (1Tim. 1:12); “be strong” (6:10; Rom. 4:20; 2Tim. 2:1; Heb. 11:34); and “increase in strength” (Acts 9:22).

As the Servants of Christ

Ephesians 6:5-9 Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ; Not with eyeservice, as men-pleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart; With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men: Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free. And, ye masters, do the same things unto them, forbearing threatening: knowing that your Master also is in heaven; neither is there respect of persons with him. 

‘Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ.’ Six commands for servants (Col. 3:22-25): To obey your masters (i.e., be faithful employees; Col. 3:22). To be conscientious in service (6:5). Not to render eyeservice (worship or adore; 6:6; Col. 3:22). To do the will of God from the heart (6:6). To render cheerful service to men as you would to the Lord (6:7; Col. 3:23). To recognize that if you are not properly recompensed by man you will be by God (6:8; Gal. 6:7-8; Col. 3:24-25).

‘Masters, do the same things unto them, forbearing threatening.’ Three commands for masters (Col. 4:1): Act in the same affectionate, conscientious manner toward your servants, as they do toward you (6:9; Col. 4:1). Do not threaten your servants (6:9). Recognize that you have the same Master as your servants and that there is no partiality with Him (6:9; Rom. 2:11; Col. 4:1).

Children and Parents

Ephesians 6:1 -4 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. And, you fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. 

‘Obey your parents in the Lord’ Two commands are given for children (Col. 3:20): To obey their parents – in the Lord – never in sin (6:1). To honour their parents – by being respectful without compromising their relationship with God (6:2).

‘For this is right’ – Four reasons for children to obey parents: This is right (6:1). It is a commandment (6:2; Ex. 20:12). It is a blessing of well-being (6:3). Long life is promised (6:3).

‘You fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.’ Two commands for fathers (Col. 3:21): Provoke not your children to wrath. Avoid severity, anger, and cruelty. Cruel parents generally have rebellious children. Correct, do not punish. Punishment is from a principle of revenge; correction is from a principle of loving concern. Bring up children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. The mind is to be nourished with wholesome discipline and instruction which will bend them toward God and Christian living.

‘Nurture’ [Greek: paideia] child training; education; discipline; correction. Translated “nurture” here; “instruction” (2Tim. 3:16); “chastening” (Heb. 12:5, 7, 11); and “chastisement” (Heb. 12:8).

‘Admonition’ [Greek: nouthesia] warning, admonition, reproof (1Cor. 10:11; Tit. 3:10).

He that Loves His Wife

Ephesians 5:28-33 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loves his wife loves himself. For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourished and cherished it, even as the Lord the church: For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church. Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband. 

‘As their own bodies’ – The woman is part of the man and one flesh with him (5:28-32; Gen. 2:21-25). When one party acts selfishly, spiteful and sinful, it affects both allowing curses in the marriage, financially, physically (health) and spiritually. The same goes for acting in accordance with God’s Word and thus bringing His blessings forth.

‘For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.’ You and all in Christ-like you make the true saints or the body of Christ (2:19-22; 4:1-6, 25; 1Cor. 6:15; 12:13, 26; Col. 1:18, 24). As representatives of the kingdom of Heaven, we are to follow in His footsteps as stipulated in the gospels (1Pet. 2:21-23).

‘Joined unto’ [Greek: proskollao] glue on to; cemented to.

‘Reverence’ [Greek: phobeo] to strike with fear; to frighten. It is translated “reverence” only here; “be afraid” 29 times; and “fear” 62 times (Rev. 1:17; 2:10; etc.). She is to reverence him as her head (5:23-24; 1Cor. 11:3). This is not to be subservient so that the man can rule, abuse or misuse his wife; but to take lead in all decisions, provisions and stressful matters as well as love, nourish and protect his wife (5:29).

Even as Christ Also Loved

Ephesians 5:25b -27 …even as Christ also loved… That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. 

‘Sanctify’ [Greek: hagiazo] set apart or consecrate, referring to the new birth (John 3:5). Not the natural birth, but to be born again of both water and Spirit. Not water baptism; all Old Testament saints were saved and born again without water baptism (Heb. 9:15; 11:1-40; Rom. 3:23-25; 4:1-25; Gal. 4:29; Jas. 2:23). Water baptism is a mere figure (1Pet. 3:21) and a witness (1Jn. 5:6-10), but not held as essential to salvation (2:8-9; 1Cor. 1:13-24; 15:1-5; Rom. 1:16; 10:9-14; Acts 10:43; 13:38-39; 16:31; John 3:14-18, 3:36; 5:24; 1Jn. 5:1). It is only for men who have repented (Matt. 3:2-6; 28:19; Acts 2:38-41; 8:12, 37; 10:43-48; 18:8; 19:4).

‘That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.’ This is the 9th and last New Testament prophecy in Ephesians (5:27) and is unfulfilled.

‘Glorious Church’ – the glorious gathering of reborn individual Christians. Please remember that the word church should have been congregation or assembly and doesn’t refer to today’s business-like churches. The Greek word endoxos is used here and we, as the body of Christ, are now glorious because of the glorious gospel (1Cor. 4:4; 1Tim. 1:11), the glorious power of God working in it (Col. 1:11) to make it pure, holy, spotless, and without blemish. It will be presented to Christ as a glorious body because of the glorious liberty of all children of God (Rom. 8:21), and the glorious bodies that saints will receive (Php. 3:21). Please remember that not everyone calling themselves Christians necessarily qualifies as a true saint except those who obey His Word and live accordingly (Jas. 1:19-26; Rom. 6; 1Pet.2:21-23; 1Jn. 1-3).

‘Spot’ [Greek: spilos] blemish (2Pet. 2:13). ‘Wrinkle’ [Greek: rhutis] wrinkle, no mark of age.

‘Holy… without blemish’ – God’s choice: This is what God chose before the overthrow of Lucifer’s world – that all of the new race of Adam who accepts Jesus Christ should be holy and without blame before Him in love. It is this plan that is chosen for all believers, not the individual conformity of any one person to that plan. The final choice is left up to the individual, not God. All are called and chosen to become holy before God in love if they want to accept this plan and choice of God, but only those who meet the conditions will be so blessed (John 3:16-20; Mark 16:15-16; 1Tim. 2:4; 2Pet. 3:9; Rev. 22:17). This is the true meaning of election and predestination wherever found in Scripture (1:5; Rom. 8:29). In other words, the plan is predestined and foreknown, not the individual conformity to the plan.

Husbands

Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it 

‘Husbands, love your wives…’ Eight commands are given here for husbands: To be the head of the wife (5:23). To love their wives as Christ loved His body (5:25). To love their wives as their own bodies (5:28, 33). To nourish [Greek: ektrepho] bring up, care for, protect (5:29; 6:4; Rev. 12:6). To cherish [Greek: thalpo] to foster, warm in one’s bosom (5:29; 1Thess. 2:7). To be joined as one flesh (5:30-31). To leave their parents for their wives (5:31). To cleave to their wives (5:31; Matt. 19:5).

Husbands are not to rule their wives, but love, nourish and protect them as the head of the body and must be just as faithful to their wives as they want them to be to them; give them no excuse for sin. They must give their wives honour and use their superior strength in protecting her and as being heirs together of life (1Pet. 3:7).

‘The church, and gave himself for it’ – Sixteen facts: Christ and His body: Christ is head of His body (5:23). Christ is Saviour of us (5:23). Christians must be subject to Christ in all things (5:24). Christ gave Himself for us (5:25). Christ sanctifies us with the washing of the Word (5:26). Christ cleanses us with the washing by the Word (5:26). Christ will receive us to Himself (5:27; John 14:1-3; 1Thess. 4:16; 1Cor. 15:23, 51-58; Col. 3:4). Christ is making us glorious (5:27; 1Cor. 6:11; 2Cor. 3:18). Christ is making us spotless (5:27). Christ is making us perfect (5:27). Christ is making us holy (5:27). Christ is making us faultless (5:27). Christ nourishes us, cares for us, brings us up, and protects us (5:29). Christ cherishes us, fosters, and warms us in His bosom (5:29). We are part of Christ (5:30-32; 1Cor. 12:12-13, 27). We are one with Christ (5:30-32; 1Cor. 6:17; Rom. 12:4-5).

Christ is the Head, Saviour, Sanctifier, Purifier, Glorifier, Builder, Nourisher, Cherisher, Unifier, Protector, and the Receiver of all reborn Christians who are prepared to follow His Word and example as stated in 1Peter 2:21-23 (5:23-33). Water is used in a figurative sense of salvation (John 4:14; Isa. 12:3), of the Spirit baptism (John 7:37-39), and cleansing by the Word of God (5:26; John 15:3;). Since men are cleansed and born again by the Word (Jas. 1:18; 1Pet. 1:23), it is clear that being born of water means being born again by the Word of God.

Giving Thanks Always

Ephesians 5:18-21 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God

‘Drunk’ [Greek: methusko] This again refers to the orgies of Bacchus when men and women would get drunk entering into all kinds of immoral acts. ‘Excess’ [Greek: asotia] debauchery of every kind.

‘Filled with the Spirit’ – This is the privilege of every Christian. It is true that every born-again person receives the Spirit of sonship and has the Holy Spirit in a measure (Rom. 8:9, 14-16), but this is not the kind of filling one may yet receive if he will accept the truth and seek God for the fullness of the Spirit (Matt. 3:11; Luke 11:13; 24:49; John 1:31-34; 7:37-39; 14:12; Acts 1:4-8; 2:38-39; 5:32). Different measures of the Spirit are noted as follows in Scripture: Mosaic portion (Num. 11:17, 25). The mosaic portion is divided into 71 portions (Num. 11:16-17, 25-29). Elijah portion (2Kin. 2:9). Double portion (2Kin. 2:9-10). Elijah portion on John the Baptist (Luke 1:15-17). Earnest of the Spirit (2Cor. 1:22; 5:5; 1Jn. 4:13; Php. 1:19). The Spirit “without measure” (John 3:34; Isa. 11:2; 42:1; 61:1; Luke 4:16-21; Acts 10:38); Spirit baptism or baptismal measure (Matt. 3:11; 20:22-23; Luke 3:16; John 1:31-34; Acts 1:4-8; 2:1-21; 8:15-24; 10:44-48; 11:14-18; 15:7-11; 19:1-7; Gal. 3:14); the fulness of God (Eph. 3:19; Rom. 15:29); the rivers of living water (John 7:37-39); and the full anointing of the Spirit and enduement of power from on high (Luke 24:49; John 14:12-15).

‘In psalms and hymns and spiritual songs.’ The difference between the psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs is not fully clear. The psalms no doubt refer to the book of Psalms. Hymns and spiritual songs could include any psalm in the book of Psalms and also others that were commonly known among the people of that day (Matt. 26:30; Eph. 5:19; Col. 3:16; Ex. 15:1, 2; Num. 21:17; Deut. 13:1-18; Jdg. 5:12; Son. 1:1; Isa. 5:1; 26:1; 42:10). The reference might also be to spontaneous singing in the Spirit, as in 1Corinthians 14:15-16.

‘Songs’ [Greek: ode] is a song of thanksgiving.

‘Making melody’ [Greek: psallo] to play a stringed instrument with the fingers; to strike a chord; sing to the music of a harp (Rom. 15:9; 1Cor. 14:15; Eph. 5:19; Jas. 5:13).

‘Giving thanks always for all things unto God’ – Because of continued blessings from God.

‘In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.’ Through Him alone we can approach God (Mark 16:17; John 14:12-15; 16:23-26; Col. 3:17; 1Tim. 2:4; Heb. 10:19). ‘Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.’ Let no man be stubborn in his opinion to disturb the peace of other believers