In Ephesians 4, Paul calls the Ephesian believers to walk worthy of their call as saints in the body of Christ. As a part of Faith Baptist Church, we have an equal opportunity, privilege, and even responsibility to Christ and His church. In verse two, Paul begins describing this vocation we are called with four characteristics:
1. Lowliness--Proper Evaluation of Self
In reality, we have nothing to boast of except God and His grace (I Cor. 15:10; James 1:17). As we prepare our hearts for service in Christ's church, may we recognize our lack of ability and merit outside the goodness of God displayed in our lives.
2. Meekness--Power Under Control
Understand that meekness is not weakness. It is likened to a tamed horse under the control of a bit, bridle, and reins--very powerful, but under control. This is practically done in our lives by aligning ourselves with the truth of God's Word and allowing the Spirit of God to direct our attitudes and actions (Gal. 5).
3. Longsuffering--Patient, Long Tempered
This speaks of our response to others when they hurt or attack us. When, not if we are hurt in Christ's church, God calls us to love and forgive (Eph. 4:32).
4. Forbearance--Recognize the Worth of Those Around Us
While similar to patience, this refers more to the acceptance of people in spite of their failings and weaknesses. This it to endure the difficult and trying times ministering to and with others because of Christ's love for them, rather then neglecting them at the first sign of difficulty.
It is through these Spirit filled attitudes that we endeavor to keep the Spirit's unity in the bond of peace (Eph. 4:3). This is the responsibility of every believer in Christ's church: from pastoral staff member, officer, teacher, usher, greeter, and everyone in between.
- Pastor David