Metaphysical Bible Interpretation of Ephesians Chapter 4
Metaphysically Interpreting Ephesians 4:1-16
4:1I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beseech you to walk worthily of the calling wherewith ye were called, 4:2with all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; 4:3giving diligence to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 4:4There is one body, and one Spirit, even as also ye were called in one hope of your calling; 4:5one Lord, one faith, one baptism,4:6one God and Father of all, who is over all, and through all, and in all.
4:7But unto each one of us was the grace given according to the measure of the gift of Christ. 4:8Wherefore he saith,
When he ascended on high, he led captivity captive,
And gave gifts unto men.
4:9(Now this, He ascended, what is it but that he also descended into the lower parts of the earth? 4:10He that descended is the same also that ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things.) 4:11And he gave some to be apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 4:12for the perfecting of the saints, unto the work of ministering, unto the building up of the body of Christ:4:13till we all attain unto the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a fullgrown man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: 4:14that we may be no longer children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, in craftiness, after the wiles of error; 4:15but speaking truth in love, we may grow up in all things into him, who is the head, even Christ;4:16from whom all the body fitly framed and knit together through that which every joint supplieth, according to the working in due measure of each several part, maketh the increase of the body unto the building up of itself in love.
May 12, 1935: Eph. 4:1-7
What health insurance does the follower of Christ find best? Sane ideas held in his mind and applied by him to his physical needs form his best guaranty of health.
How can the social problems of crime, lack, and unemployment be solved? The combined power of the spiritual ideas brought to bear on these problems by the concerted actions of a nuclear group of workers in Christ will cause the full solution to develop.
March 3, 1929: Eph. 4:4-6
Should there be any separation of the manifest church of Christ into sects? Paul answers this in verses 4, 5, and 6: “There is one body, and one Spirit, even as also ye were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, on faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all, and through all, and in all.”
October, 7, 1928: Eph. 4:11-16
What is the teaching of the fourth chapter of Ephesians? The teaching of the fourth chapter of Ephesians is oneness, completeness. To this end “he gave some to be apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers.” Metaphysically interpreted, these Gospel messengers are man’s inner faculties and powers quickened and inspired by Spirit to do a constructive, uplifting, redeeming work in consciousness, to the end that man may become wholly enlightened and perfected.
What is the goal of every one who accepts the Gospel of Jesus Christ? The goal of every one is Godlikeness. Jesus Christ is the perfect pattern for all and we must become like Him; therefore a great transformation is to take place in our minds and in our bodies. As we grow more Christlike we shall grow nearer the true “unity of the faith” that exists only in spiritual understanding and practice.
Explain this clause: “That we may be no longer children, tossed to and fro.” “That we may be no longer children, tossed to and fro,” means that we shall become more stable, more reliable, and more sure in expressing Truth as we grow Godward. This will be accomplished by our learning to contact and to know God within ourselves and for ourselves. God’s stability and wisdom expressing in us will make us stable and will bring us to the place wherein we shall no longer be moved unduly by any outer seeming. To the degree that we know Truth for ourselves, we cannot be led astray by subtle errors either from within or from without. By “speaking truth in love” or by dealing truly in all kindness and love, we grow rapidly in the likeness of Christ.
March 3, 1929: Eph. 4:11-16
In the fourth chapter of his letter to the Ephesians, is Paul talking altogether about the manifest church of Christ or does his meaning include the building of the perfect Christ body, under divine law, in each individual? This is explained in verse 13: “Till we all attain unto the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a full-grown man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.”
What further assurance have we that Paul was visualizing the body of the man who has incorporated in mind, and expressed in his redeemed flesh, the love of God, the life of God, the wisdom of God, and the power of God? In verse 16 Paul emphasizes in a physiological descriptor that he means the body of the personal man: “From whom all the body fitly framed and knit together through that which every joint supplieth, according to the working in due measure of each several part, maketh the increase of the body unto the building up of itself in love.”
May 12, 1935: Eph. 4:11-16
Can the “many wonders and signs” done by the apostles be repeated in our time? They are being repeated today by individuals and by various groups working in the understanding of divine law as changeless Principle.
Name some of our spiritual possessions. Ideas of life, love, strength, wisdom, peace, and plenty form the bulk of our spiritual possessions. Sharing these increases instead of diminishes them.
What does growing up in Christ mean? This term applies to those who are learning to use the Christ power and the Christ Spirit objectively.
When Jesus said (John 5:17), “My Father worketh even until now, and I work,” to what sort of work did He refer? The work of Jesus, aside from teaching and healing, covered the expression of Truth in word, in conscious and subconscious thought, and in every act. He was complete concentration on His goal, full absorption in His task.”
Do negative habits of thinking and acting characterize the full-grown Christ man? No, these habits must be put away and constructive states of mind established instead, by the one who would grow up in Christ.
December 7, 1941: Eph. 4:11-16
What is the true church of Christ? This is the whole mass of humanity who are in agreement on certain fundamental principles, whether they are outwardly members of a church or not.
For men to work together harmoniously is it imperative that they have all activities in common? No, their work may be diverse. Some may be “apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers.” Yet while their work need not be the same, their loyalty and faith in God should be if the best results are to follow their group efforts.
Does concerted effort toward a common aim lead to the development of the faculties of the individual? Yes; and as the individual develops his faculties he also grows in spiritual consciousness: builds up in himself the body of Christ.
How only is it wise or right to speak the Truth? Truth that is spoken in a spirit of love is always wise, right, and safe. Truth spoken without love may end in destructive thoughts instead of construction. Instead of building up love and good will among men it may tear down the painstaking work of an individual or an entire group.
Metaphysically Interpreting Ephesians 4:17-24
4:17This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye no longer walk as the Gentiles also walk, in the vanity of their mind, 4:18being darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardening of their heart; 4:19who being past feeling gave themselves up to lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.4:20But ye did not so learn Christ;4:21if so be that ye heard him, and were taught in him, even as truth is in Jesus: 4:22that ye put away, as concerning your former manner of life, the old man, that waxeth corrupt after the lusts of deceit; 4:23and that ye be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 4:24and put on the new man, that after God hath been created in righteousness and holiness of truth.
October, 28, 1934: Eph. 4:17-27
To what end is mental discipline necessary? Self-control is reached only through mental discipline and this is the chief end of such discipline.
Can the one whose mind is undisciplined be truly religious? Since order is heaven’s first law, no one can have a true understanding of religion until he learns to order his own mind.
What then is the purpose of worship? All worship should be directed toward mental discipline, and the faculties should be collected and made receptive as a preparatory step.
How did Jesus regard the divine will? He recognized intelligent principle in it when He said, “Not my will, but thine, be done.”
Of what is well-balanced thinking a product? Perfectly balanced thinking is the work of both head and heart. When we think in the head alone we lack poise. “As he [man] thinketh within himself, so is he.”
May 4, 1919: Eph. 4:20-24
Explain “Jesus” and “Christ”. “Jesus” is the Divine natural man, the manifestation of Christ. “Christ” is the man God created, the Perfect Idea Man, and is the real self of all men.
How may we “put on the new man,” that is, bring forth “Jesus Christ” in ourselves? The first step is to “put away” the “old man” of lust, limitation, etc, through denial of his reality. The send step is to accept the Truth of our being in faith; then, through understanding, to set about diligently to live the Truth in thought, in word, in deed.
December 4, 1938: Eph. 4:25
In addition to moral grounds, what metaphysical reason exists for our speaking the truth to one another? Since we are all one, we should preserve the “unity of the Spirit” in all that we do.
As the individual approaches the standard of the Christ perfection, what is the general result? He raises the common ideal of men to a higher level.
Metaphysically Interpreting Ephesians 4:25-32
4:25Wherefore, putting away falsehood, speak ye truth each one with his neighbor: for we are members one of another. 4:26Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: 4:27neither give place to the devil. 4:28Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labor, working with his hands the thing that is good, that he may have whereof to give to him that hath need. 4:29Let no corrupt speech proceed out of your mouth, but such as is good for edifying as the need may be, that it may give grace to them that hear. 4:30And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, in whom ye were sealed unto the day of redemption. 4:31Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamor, and railing, be put away from you, with all malice:4:32and be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving each other, even as God also in Christ forgave you.
March 5, 1950: Eph. 4:25-32
What else besides belief in magic is better denied out of mind by the follower of Truth? Falsity in all social relationships (“Putting away falsehood, speak ye truth each one with his neighbor”), anger and resentment; dishonest in every form; uncleanness of thought and speech.
What other undesirable traits should we seek to overcome through the power of the Truth consciousness? All bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, railing, and malice, and every thought or emotion that is negative in its effect on the mind or body should be ruled out.
With what can we displace negative thoughts and emotions? With love and active goodness. “Be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving each other, even as God also in Christ forgave you.”
October 20, 1929: Eph. 4:28
How can we dignify the most menial work? We can dignify all work by realizing that we are not serving man, but serving God. If you are weary of your work, ask the Lord to show you wherein you are serving Him; then rejoice in what you are doing?
How may we do our work easily and efficiently? We may do our work easily and efficiently if we claim it to be God’s work and claim that the Spirit of God goes before us and does for us in Spirit just what we are trying to carry out in the manifest. Then we shall “come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.”
Transcribed by Tracie Louise on 11-09-2013