That saying I learned as a kid: “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me,” was a lie! Words can do way more damage than sticks and stones. In this section of Ephesians the Apostle Paul instructs us to be careful with the words we use. Instead of tearing each other down, we should seek to build each other up in the faith with words that “give grace.”
Are you a thief? This message may cause you to change your answer. Paul the Apostle shows us how the church should be a giving community, not a community of thieves. This message also shows us how not stealing is related to the gospel and our being ambassadors for Christ in our city and beyond.
Anger is a problem. Lots of things frustrate us, test our patience, or straight out make us mad. But what does the Bible say about anger? Is it ever okay to be angry? Why do we get angry, and how do we deal with our anger?
This message from Ephesians 4:26 gives a biblical perspective on selfish and selfless anger, the reasons for anger and some ideas for controlling your anger.
This section of Ephesians gets into practical exhortations for Christians to live by. Verse 25 covers truth telling and warns us not to lie. But lying is so pervasive in our culture, how do we swim against that stream? This message looks at different kinds of lies, why we lie, and why lying is bad, and then unpacks Paul’s challenge to speak the truth.
This is the “practical” part of Ephesians, the part where God tells us to do stuff: be kind, don’t lie, don’t steal, watch your anger, forgive each other, etc. In this section the Apostle Paul exhorts us to “put off” our old self and “put on” our new self. This sermon talks about what that looks like and how to do it.
In this message, given by Joshua Smith, we look at how every member of the body of Christ causes the growth of the body of Christ. Joshua discusses what verse 15 means by “speaking the truth in love,” and how crucial both truth and love are to church growth.
(Note: Unfortunately, the sermon for Part 3 of this series is missing because it did not record properly.)
Ephesians 4:11 shows us that God gave leaders to the church to equip the church for service. This is revolutionary in some Western contexts because we hire a pastor and a secretary and hope they get everything done. That’s not the biblical teaching on ministry: everybody does the ministry. The leadership is to guide the process, help people find their gifts and talents, and raise people up to serve and lead. This message also gives a helpful guide for finding your gifts for serving the body of Christ.
This message begins a four-week series on the topic of ecclesiology: the church. Ephesians refers to Jesus’ followers as the “body of Christ” because each believer is brought into union with Christ when we become Christians. We are also brought into union with each member of the body of Christ, so that just as we bear a special connection to Christ, we bear a special connection to every other believer also.
This is why Paul exhorts us to maintain the unity of the Spirit: we are in fact one, let’s live like it! This oneness will show the world that God is doing something in our midst.
This message wraps up the first half of the book, the “theological” portion, in which the Apostle Paul unpacks the riches of God’s sovereign plan, the mystery of the new people of God, and the inexhaustible love of Christ for us. As a result of all this, Paul prays that the Ephesians would “tap into” the power of God for their lives.
At the beginning we spend some time talking about the recent renovation of our Nursery and Children’s Worship room, our financial situation as a church, and the need for generosity for our future mission.
This passage of Ephesians brings us face to face with the reality of the spiritual world. Paul the Apostle says that God is using the church to show his amazing wisdom to the spiritual forces and authorities–meaning, the demonic realm. It is as if God is showing Satan that he can establish a people for himself who love and serve each other, over against Satan’s desire to bring relational chaos to the world.
This is an amazing passage! And it forces us to look beyond the here and now and recognize we are a part of the biggest thing in the world: the church.