Ephesians 5:14-20 "Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and
arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. 15 See then that
ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, 16 Redeeming the time,
because the days are evil. 17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but
understanding what the will of the Lord is. 18 And be not drunk with
wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; 19 Speaking to
yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making
melody in your heart to the Lord; 20 Giving thanks always for all things
unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;"
Sometimes the Lord's people are asleep spiritually. This is
not the same as being dead. A dead person cannot wake up or arise. A
person must first have life before he can wake up and arise. These are
born-again children of God. Sometimes people who are asleep resemble
those that are dead. One of the characteristics of a sleeping person is
that you do not see much activity. In a dead person, you see no
activity. However, there is a big difference between a sleeping person
and a dead person. A sleeping person can be aroused from his sleep. A
dead person cannot be aroused.
The admonition is to awake from sleep and arise from the
dead. We should awake from lethargy and we should become active in the
worship and service of God. We are created in Christ Jesus unto good
works. We were ordained to perform the good works to the praise and
glory of God.
If we look like the world and walk like the world, then who
can distinguish us from those that are "dead in trespasses and sins?"
Paul said in Rom. 13:12 "The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let
us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light." As children of the day we are to cast off the works
of darkness and put on the armour of light. We are to walk in the good
works that God has ordained that we walk in. We are to worship God in
Spirit and in truth and we are to serve him acceptably according to the
word of God.
When we awake and arise, we have the blessed promise that
"Christ will give thee light." We no longer must walk in the darkness
of understanding of this world. Christ has provided every thing that we
need for us. He gives us the light of his word, which is set forth in
Ps. 119:105 "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my
path." Furthermore, he has given us the light of the gospel:
1. 2 Cor 4:4 "In whom the god of this world
hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the
glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto
2. 2 Tim 1:10 "But is now made manifest by the
appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and
hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:"
"See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as
wise." Circumspectly is translated from the Greek word, akribos,
meaning diligent precision. Our manner of living is to be in a precise
way. We are to live according to thus saith the Lord. The word of God
is precise as to how that we should strive to live our lives. We need
the knowledge of God's word that we may live our lives in this precise
manner. Further, we are to be diligent in this walk. It is not just a
sometime or convenient walk, but it is to be a continual diligent walk
before the Lord. To not walk circumspectly is to walk as a fool. It is
simply traveling through the wide gate and walking the broad way that
leads to destruction. We will experience much destruction in our lives
if we fail to walk circumspectly. The Lord compared those who heard his
sayings and did them not to a fool: Matt. 7:26 "And every one that
heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto
a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: 27 And the rain
descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that
house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it."
In contrast, if we walk circumspectly, then we are wise.
The Lord compared those who heard his sayings and did them to a wise
man: Matt. 7:24 "Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and
doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon
a rock: 25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds
blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon
a rock." This is the same as entering the strait gate and walking the
narrow way that leads to life.
"Redeeming the time, because the days are evil." We are
only upon this earth a short time. We do not know the day of our
departure. There are scriptures that teach us to take advantage of the
time that we have:
1. Eccl. 12:1 "Remember now thy Creator in the
days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw
nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them;"
2. 2 Cor 6:2 "(For he saith, I have heard thee
in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee:
behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)"
3. James 4:13 "Go to now, ye that say, To day
or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and
buy and sell, and get gain: 14 Whereas ye know not what shall be on the
morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a
little time, and then vanisheth away. 15 For that ye ought to say, If
the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that."
"Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will
of the Lord is." In some things we understand what the will of the Lord
is because it is set forth for us in his word. Other things, we must
rely upon the leadership of the Holy Spirit to show us what we should
do. However, we are to do according to his will and not according to
our will. May God help us to understand what he would have us to do.
"And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be
filled with the Spirit."
Alcohol or wine is often referred to as "spirits." The effect of
alcohol is to take you out of your mind and to release your inhibitions
to do things that you would not otherwise do and you know to be wrong.
The effect of being filled with the Spirit is to put you in your right
mind and to give you courage to do that which is right. The effect of
alcohol will eventually make you that you cannot speak without
stammering or to walk without weaving. The effect of being filled with
the Spirit is that you can worship and praise God in a perfect manner
and you can walk in a way that is pleasing to God.
"Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual
songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord." Singing
good spiritual songs are a rich blessing from the Lord. However, our
singing should be according to truth. In singing we are speaking to
ourselves and at the same time praising the Lord. Our melody is to be
made in our hearts and not on some musical instrument. A musical
instrument cannot give praise unto God. Nevertheless, God is pleased
when we praise him from the heart. Acapella (without musical
accompaniment) singing is the New Testament pattern for singing in the
Our singing is to be addressed to the Lord and not to the
congregation. We are not to sing in order to impress anyone, but rather
we are to give praise unto the Lord, making a joyful noise unto the
"Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father
in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;" By the leadership of the Spirit
we pray to the Father through our mediator Jesus Christ. It is by the
authority or name of Jesus Christ that we pray. Our prayers ascend unto
the Father because of the atoning blood of Christ and because of his
intercession on our behalf. Further, every thing we have that is of any
spiritual value came from God and we are to give thanks unto God and the
Father for those things.
Ephesians 5:21-24 "Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear
of God. 22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the
Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the
head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24 Therefore as
the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own
husbands in every thing."
"Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God."
The word, submit, comes from the Greek word, hupotasso, meaning to rank
under, be under obedience, or to subordinate. It is a military term
reflecting rank. The lower ranks are to be submissive or obey the
higher ranks. To submit yourselves one to another indicates that in our
minds and actions we are to consider others as being of higher rank than
we are and to be submissive or obedient to them. Thus, every member of
the church is to consider all the other members to be of higher rank
than he or she is and to be submissive or obedience to the other
members. This reflects humility throughout the whole body of the
church. Our inclination and desire for submission comes from the fear
of God. Once we are born of the Spirit we begin to fear or
reverentially respect God. This great respect for God brings about our
respect for our fellow members of the body of Christ. Therefore, we are
to respect them to the extent that we are willing to subordinate
ourselves unto them.
"Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto
the Lord." The principle of the wife ranking herself under the husband
in authority is taught in several places in the scriptures:
1. Col. 3:18 "Wives, submit yourselves unto
your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord."
2. Tit. 2:4 "That they may teach the young
women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 To
be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own
husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed."
3. 1 Pet. 3:1 "Likewise, ye wives, be in
subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they
also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; 2
While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear."
4. 1 Pet. 3:5 "For after this manner in the old
time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being
in subjection unto their own husbands: 6 Even as Sara obeyed Abraham,
calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are
not afraid with any amazement."
5. 1 Cor. 14:34 "Let your women keep silence in
the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are
commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. 35 And if they
will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a
shame for women to speak in the church."
6. 1 Tim. 2:9 "In like manner also, that women
adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety;
not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; 10 But
(which becometh women professing godliness) with good works. 11 Let the
woman learn in silence with all subjection. 12 But I suffer not a woman
to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence."
In the home, this ranking of authority of wives under
husbands does not reflect the relative worth or importance of either
one. This is proven as the Lord submitted himself to his earthly mother
and father: Luke 2:48 "And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his
mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy
father and I have sought thee sorrowing. 49 And he said unto them, How
is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's
business? 50 And they understood not the saying which he spake unto
them. 51 And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was
subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her
heart." No one should ever question the relative importance of Jesus to
Joseph and Mary. Obviously, Jesus is far more important and worth far
more than any mortal man. Yet Jesus was obedient to the authority
structure that God established for the home. So likewise, we should
recognize the authority structure God has established for the home.
"For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is
the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24 Therefore
as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own
husbands in every thing." The husband is the head (authority over) of
the wife. He is the head of the wife because God established it to be
this way. He would have no right of authority, except God gave it to
him. This authority structure is patterned after the Lord's authority
over the church. The husband is head of the wife as Christ is the head
of the church. Our marriages are to reflect the relationship of Christ
to the church. As we will see, the husband's love of the wife is to be
patterned after Christ's love of the church. Likewise, the wife's
submission to the husband is to be patterned after the church's
submission to the Lord. What a wonderful pattern the Lord has given us
for our families.
Furthermore, the above teaches us that as Christ is the saviour of the body, then the husband has a responsibility to support
and protect the wife and children.
Ephesians 5:25-33 "Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also
loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26 That he might sanctify and
cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 That he might
present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or
any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. 28 So
ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his
wife loveth himself. 29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but
nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: 30 For we are
members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. 31 For this cause
shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his
wife, and they two shall be one flesh. 32 This is a great mystery: but I
speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless let every one of
you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see
that she reverence her husband."
God set forth the pattern for a husband's love for his wife
is to mirror or follow the pattern of God's love for the church.
Husbands are to love their wives even as Christ loved the church and
gave himself for it. The love of Christ for the church was a
sacrificial love. He gave himself for the church. He gave himself for
the church when he left the portals of glory and came into this world.
He gave himself for the church when he lived upon the earth. He gave
himself for the church when he died upon the cross to redeem his bride
from her sins. He gave himself for the church from beginning to the
end. Likewise, we husbands are not to live for ourselves, but we are to
live sacrificial lives giving ourselves for our bride and subsequently
for our children.
Too often, we see husbands who expect their wives to serve
them and be obedient unto them, but are not willing to put their wives
first in their lives. This is simply wrong. If we want our wives to be
submissive to us, then we must set the example and give ourselves for
our brides. According to the scriptures, we love God because he first
loved us. Similarly, husbands are to set the example and initiate the
love towards their wives by sacrificing themselves for their wives.
Christ, sanctified and cleansed the church with the washing
of water by the word. There is a dual application in the above. The
eternal aspect is that Christ sanctified (set apart) his bride before
the foundation of the world in election; then he set her apart by dying
for his elect upon the cross to set them apart from their sins; then he
set them apart by quickening them into spiritual life. The timely
aspect of this is that Christ sets the church apart through the
preaching of the gospel calling the elect unto his gospel kingdom. Here
the lives of his obedient children are set apart through obedience to
In the eternal aspect, there is the washing of regeneration
and renewing of the Holy Ghost. This washing of the soul and giving of
the spiritual nature sets the person apart from his condition of being
dead in trespasses and sins and enables those regenerated to be able to
seek after God. Regeneration is brought about by the voice of Christ
speaking eternal life unto the elect.
In the timely aspect, there is a washing that takes place
when God's obedient children obey the gospel call to repentance and
deliver themselves from following after this world unto worshipping and
serving the Lord in his kingdom. This call comes through the gospel
ministry preaching the gospel.
Husbands are to encourage and help their wives and children
to live godly lives by setting the example for them, talking with them
about spiritual things and encouraging them to follow after spiritual
"That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not
having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy
and without blemish." While the work of glorifying the church and
presenting her without spot or wrinkle and making her holy and without
blemish is a work only the Lord can do, yet we are to strive to present
our wives in such a light that others may see their spiritual beauties
and holy lives. We are to set the environment for them to live holy and
godly lives. Again, our example and our speech should be such as to
encourage them in this endeavor.
"So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies."
There are numerous things that we do for our bodies. We nourish our
bodies. We nurture our bodies. We exercise our bodies to keep them
healthy. We take medicines to overcome illness and to keep our bodies
healthy. We clean our bodies and clothe them to make them presentable.
We give our bodies rest. Much of our lives are given to attending to
the needs and desires of our bodies. The above scripture teaches us
that we should give just as much care and concern for our wives as we do
for our bodies. This care and concern that we give for our bodies is
done throughout the day, every day. Likewise, our care and concern for
our wives is to be done throughout the day, every day.
"He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29 For no man ever
yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the
Lord the church: 30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of
his bones." As we give so much attention to the care and nourishing and
taking care of our own flesh, this is evidence that we love our
ourselves. Likewise, loving our wives in the way that God has shown us
is another form of loving ourselves. When we give the care,
nourishment, nurture, exercise, etc. to our flesh, it responds by doing
for us what we want it to do for us. When we love our wives in the way
the Lord has taught us, our wives respond by showing us the love and
respect that we expect from them. The Lord gave himself for the church,
he nourishes her, and cherishes her and she responds by serving him and
Further, the Lord has brought the church into a union with
him. The church is so closely united with the Lord that the members of
the church are now considered to be members of his body, of his flesh,
and of his bones. She is vitally a part of the Lord.
"For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and
shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh." The
family unit is by design of the Lord. He designed a family to consist
of husband, wife, and children. There comes a time when the children
grow up and go out and form their own family.
God gave the marriage covenant in the Garden of Eden when
Adam pronounced the above after God had given him Eve to be his wife:
Gen. 2:23 "And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my
flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. 24
Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave
unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh." The Lord confirmed this
covenant was from God when he declared in Matt. 19:4 "And he answered
and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the
beginning made them male and female, 5 And said, For this cause shall a
man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they
twain shall be one flesh? 6 Wherefore they are no more twain, but one
flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put
In marriage, a man leaves the family in which he was raised
and starts his own family. He marries his wife and cleaves unto her.
Just as the relationship between the Lord and the church is a union that
vitally joins them together so that she is now members of his body, and
bone of his bone, so the husband and wife being joined together in
marriage are vitally one also. This is a unit that is not to be
broken. We are to strive to maintain this unit and the unity of the
marriage relationship. When we marry we are no longer two separate
individuals living two separate lives, but we have become a unit and our
lives are intertwined until parted by death.
"This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and
the church. 33 Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love
his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her
husband." This beautiful mystery of the relationship between Christ and
the church and the relationship between the husband and wife mirrors one
another according to the design of God. In honor of the relationship
between Christ and the church, every one of us husbands are to love our
wife even as himself. Likewise, in honor of this relationship, the wife
is to see that she reverences her husband.