Wednesday, 31 August 2016
I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, Ephesians 4:1
The word “therefore” is given based on all that he has thus far said in the epistle. He is asking them to consider all that he has written and to take it into consideration. This is made especially poignant by the words “I… the prisoner of the Lord.” The Greek reads “in the Lord.” Though he was a prisoner under Nero, it was because of his status “in the Lord” that he was imprisoned. It is what the Lord had willed for his life at that time, and his service would be best used from prison.
This may seem contradictory, but Joseph was once imprisoned and it was that time of incarceration that eventually led him to becoming the second highest in the land of Egypt. God was using his time in prison for a greater purpose, and the same was true with Paul who was also being used in this manner. Based on that status, meaning a prisoner in the Lord, he desired them to “walk worthy of the calling with which you were called.”
If Paul’s incarceration was part of God’s plan, then they could look at his position which would otherwise seem ignoble; and they could then consider that whatever position they were in, they too could find it a place of honor because of the Lord’s positioning them where they were. In their own position, be it high or lowly, they could then walk in a similarly worthy manner. If high, they would conduct themselves with humility. If low, they would conduct themselves with dignity.
Paul has shown them that position in this world is irrelevant in regards to position in Christ. This is what he is relaying to them with his “therefore.” They should consider themselves as Christians first and foremost, and conduct their walk in that regard.
Life application: It is a common thing for people to get swept up in an almost “idol worship” concerning pastors, preachers, and teachers of the Bible. But it should not be this way. Rather, some of the seemingly lowliest of the church may be the ones who are walking in the most worthy manner in regards to their calling. Let us consider all according to how they honor the Lord, regardless of their position or title.
Lord God, it is wonderful to know that we are all accepted by You because of the Lord Jesus. It doesn’t matter how wealthy we are, how big of a house we have, what color we are, or what our job is. These are worldly things. You look at us based on how we walk according to our calling, and not by these temporary divisions of life. Be pleased to be glorified through how we present our lives as Christians, and help us always to desire Your glory and honor above all else. Amen.