Sermon on Ephesians 4:1-16, for the 10th Sunday after Pentecost, on the church as the body of Christ. How does Paul teach about the unity, health, and cooperation of the body of Christ, as concerns its internal and external relations? What does it mean for us that the Church is a work and creation of God, and not man?
Sermon Talking Points
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- Paul urges us in Ephesian 4:1 to “walk in a manner worthy of [your] calling.” What is your calling as a “saint” or “holy one” in the Lord? What is a “worthy manner of life?” Colossians 1:10; Philippians 1:27; 1 Peter 1:13-2:3; 4:12-19.
- What fruits of the Spirit or virtues does Paul name in Eph. 4:1-3 as essential to the life of a Christian as a member of a congregation? How do they serve the unity and building up of the body? What are the contrary works of the flesh that are destructive to the same? Gal. 5:19-26.
- In verses 4-6, what are the seven “ones” that describe the unity of Christ’s church? How is that unity founded and established by Christ Himself? John 17. How are spiritual gifts given in different measure to different Christians? Eph. 4:7; Rom. 12:3; 1 Cor. 12:12-31
- What “ascent” and “descent” did Christ Jesus undergo for us and our salvation, and what sort of victory and triumph did He display as He rose and ascended to God? Psalm 68:18; John 1:51; Rom. 10:6-8; Col. 2:15
- What special callings does Christ supply His church with, to equip the saints and build up the church? Eph. 4:11-13; Rom. 10:14-17
- How do Christians individually and also as group (in the body) go through stages of maturity and growth? What supplies our growth? Eph. 4:12-16; 1 Peter. 2:2-3; Heb. 5:11-14. What can threaten and unsettle those who are weak in the faith? Eph. 4:14; 1 Tim. 1:3-7; Matt. 24:22-27
- How does the human body physically depend on healthy nourishment and the smooth interaction of its parts? How is it harmed or affected by malnutrition or injury? How does it repair? How do these analogies apply to the healthy growth and functioning of the Christian Church? Why can’t the body survive without Christ, its head?