The Book of EPHESIANS
James J. Barker
PUT ON THE NEW MAN - Part 2
- The “old
man” (4:22) is our old Adamic nature – corrupt and unclean.
- The “new
man” (4:24) is our new nature, which we received when we received Christ.
- We inherited
Adam’s fallen nature by natural birth, and Christ’s perfect nature when we were
GRIEVE NOT THE HOLY SPIRIT
- If we take Ephesians 4:30 in
its immediate context, it means that worthless talk grieves the Holy
- Certainly inappropriate
speech is part of our old nature and should be carefully avoided (cf.
- This is the immediate
context. Let’s go back a few more
verses. Lying, excessive anger, and
stealing certainly grieve the Holy Spirit
- What else grieves the Holy
- Skipping church.
- Not being faithful with tithes and offerings.
- Not reading the
- Not soulwinning.
- Not praying.
- Why is the Holy Spirit
- He is “the Holy Spirit.” Therefore, anything that is
unholy grieves Him.
- He is “the Holy Spirit of God” – a member of the
Trinity. We need to remember that
the Holy Spirit is a divine Person, not a mere influence. One of the marks of a cult is that they
deny the personality of the Holy Spirit.
- We are “sealed unto the day of redemption.” A seal speaks of worship and
security. The Holy Spirit is the
seal that guarantees our preservation until Christ returns for us.
- Interestingly, people who are opposed to the doctrine of
the eternal security of the believer claim that it gives the Christian a license
to sin. But here Paul uses the
doctrine of eternal security as a strong reason why we should not
- So rather than eternal security being a license to sin,
to the contrary the true believer does not want to grieve the Holy Spirit.
HOW CAN WE GRIEVE THE HOLY SPIRIT?
- Paul lists several specific sins
- “Bitterness” – resentment, unwillingness to forgive,
holding a grudge, etc. I heard a
pastor tell a story about a Christian lady who admitted she “hated” another
- “Wrath” – the wrath of God is good and necessary, but the
wrath of man is not good and is not
- “Anger” – hostility. Lewis Sperry Chafer was praying with
H.A. Ironside one time and was surprised to hear Ironside pray, “Lord, help me
not to be a grouchy old man.” Dr. Chafer was surprised because Dr. Ironside was
such a gracious gentleman. But we
all have to watch out for this.
- “Clamor” – angry bickering, shouting at
- “Evil speaking” – slander, abusive
- “Malice” – wishing evil on others, meanness. The great 19th century
evangelist, Sam Jones, traveled all over America preaching a sermon called “Quit
Your Meanness.” Harry Ironside
wrote this: “Anger cherished becomes malice, and Satan works through a malicious
- Someone said Eph. 4:31
describes “natural vices,” whereas 4:32 describes “supernatural virtues.” We need to replace the sins of 4:31 with
the Christ-like qualities of 4:32.
- “Kindness” – an unselfish concern for the welfare of
others, Christian courtesy.
- “Tenderhearted” – a compassionate interest in others, a
willingness to bear their burdens.
- “Forgiveness” – a readiness to pardon offenses, to
overlook personal wrongs against oneself, and to harbor no desire for
retaliation. One night I was
preaching along these lines and I pointed out how I did not like that
bumper-sticker, “I DON’T GET MAD – I GET EVEN!” A man sitting up front smiled sheepishly
and admitted that he had that sticker on is car. God wants us to minimize the faults of
others, not to maximize them.
WE ARE TO WALK IN LOVE (5:1,
have noted the emphasis in the book of Ephesians on the Christian’s new walk
(2:10; 4:1, 17; 5:2, 8, 15).
walk is to be a clean and pure walk (5:3).
should be a walk marked by thankfulness to God (5:4, 20).
should walk as children of light (5:8).
- We should walk circumspectly
- God has forgiven us. We should be very grateful (cf. Eph.
- And thankful (5:4b,
- I am glad we have a day (Thanksgiving) set
apart to give thanks to God, but Christians ought to be thankful all the
- First Thessalonians 5:18 says, “In every thing give thanks: for
this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”