Paul speaks to the Ephesians, a mix of Jews and Gentiles. They are born anew to a life of right living, set apart for God. Paul continues to instruct them how to put off the old man and put on the new. Things have changed. What should it look like now? They are part of one another, one body in Christ, sealed by the Holy Spirit, and it looks different.
One Body in Christ
His readers are now part of a body. One’s actions affect the whole. Self-centred living no longer reigns. So don’t be telling lies, half truths, fibs; tell the truth instead. When you are angry, deal with it before you go to sleep. Take it to God in prayer. Leave it with Him. Don’t allow room for the devil to get in. In addition, don’t be a thief. Work hard at good honest labour to make enough money so you can help those in need. Finally, watch what you say. You want to build up the body of which you are apart, not tear it down. Every word counts.
Sealed by The Holy Spirit
As a redeemed people there is a seal, a promise of eternal life. It is the life of the Holy Spirit within us. Paul tells his readers not to grieve Him. Awareness of this sacred life entwined with our own demands honour and respect. It is the Spirit of the Lord Jesus. Live your life in such a way that does not weary or sadden Him.
It Looks Different
What should it look like now? They are part of one another, one body in Christ, sealed by the Holy Spirit, and it looks different. To those in Christ who have received, “beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness”, life has changed. Therefore, put off, throw away, cast off; futile, destructive behaviours. Paul writes of them. Get rid of all bitterness. When it takes root, the devil can use it to defile many. It doesn’t hurt just you, it also hurts those around you. It weakens the body of Christ. Don’t entertain wrath or anger. Loud quarrelling and speaking evil don’t belong here. Malicious, hostile behaviour has no place.
Meditate on Jesus. Think about His dealings with you. Treat others the same way. Be kind, tenderhearted and forgiving. What should it look like now? They are part of one another, one body in Christ, sealed by the Holy Spirit, and it looks different.
“Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer.” Psa. 19:14.