Walking Worthy of Our Calling, Part 20 (Revive the Family, Revive the Church, Awaken the Nation, O Lord #222)

spiritual-warfare

A series of homilies on Ephesians.

A homily is “a short talk on a religious or moral topic; a usually short sermon; a lecture or discourse on or of a biblical theme.”


I am sharing a verse-by-verse series of short messages on Ephesians (as well as other passages of Scripture) specifically targeted at reviving families and encouraging and exhorting husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children to do what God has commanded them to do, for if the church is to be revived and the country is to be awakened, the family must be revived first.

TEXT: Ephesians 4:3-6:

3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;

5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism,

6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

—-

John Wesley said, “We may learn hence, that we are never secure from the greatest sins until we guard against those which are thought the least; nor, indeed, till we think no sin is little, since every one is a step toward hell.”

Leonard Ravenhill said, “I want to see a fellowship where your burdens become mine! Your grief over your children becomes my grief! Where we really bear each other’s burdens; where we love each other and let the world come and see that we are the followers of the meek and lowly Jesus who cared only to do the will of His Father.”

In their book, The Ten Greatest Revivals Ever, Elmer Towns and Douglas Porter share with us: “Circuit rider John A. Grande traveled the South and was known as ‘the wild man.’ Grande once recalled: ‘I would sing a song, or pray or exhort a few minutes,’ then ‘the fire would break out among the people and the slain of the Lord everywhere were many.’ Crowds followed him from one preaching point to another, ‘singing and shouting along the way.’ At one meeting, so many people fell, they ‘lay in such heaps that it was feared they would suffocate.'”

—-

Editors of the Bible Knowledge Commentary, John Walvoord and Roy Zuck said, “Without a conjunction Paul listed the seven elements of unity centered on the three Persons of the Trinity. These provide the basis for the spirit of unity that should exist in the body of believers. One body refers to the universal church, all believers. One Spirit is the Holy Spirit who indwells the church. The words, just as you were called to one hope when you were called, indicate that all believers have a common hope regarding their future with God, a confidence that began at the time they were ‘called’ to salvation.”

As I promised yesterday, here are the seven fundamentals of the faith that all Christians must believe:
1. The deity of Jesus Christ. Jesus is 100% God and 100% man for all eternity.
2. The virgin birth of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ was born of a virgin through the power of God.
3. Salvation through the blood atonement. It is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.
4. The bodily resurrection. Jesus Christ rose from the grave by the power of God.
5. The Trinity. God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit are one.
6. The second coming of Christ. Jesus Christ is coming back to earth to receive believers into Heaven.
7. The inerrancy of scripture. The Bible is entirely inerrant and sufficient for all Christian life.

We ought to strive to maintain unity in the body of Christ because we have one baptism. Baptism is a powerful representation for the unity of the church. The act of baptism, of course, symbolizes the dying of a new believer to his old life and his rebirth into new life with Christ. As he goes down in the water, it is a symbol of his heavy, dirty soul in need of salvation and cleansing. As he comes up out of the water, it is a symbol of his soul being washed clean in the blood of the Lamb and the living water that is Jesus Christ.

The point is that when each of us were baptized into the family of God, the trappings of our old lifestyle were washed away. Every believer is a new creature. We each enter the body of Christ with a clean slate. Thus, there should be nothing at all that divides us anymore.

There is also another form of baptism that Paul is speaking of when he talks about “one baptism.” Dr. Warren Wiersbe said, “As far as the one body is concerned, there is one baptism—the baptism of the Spirit. But as far as local bodies of believers are concerned, there are two baptisms: the baptism of the Spirit, and water baptism.” The baptism of the Spirit is the Holy Spirit filling every believer. One of the things we come to realize as Christians is that the spirit man is more important than the physical man, and, as Christians, we are all filled with one Spirit — the Holy Spirit. Each of us are baptized in Him. We can maintain the unity of the body of Christ if we live in the light of the one Spirit and one Baptism that we share.

M.W. Knapp wrote:

Baptize me with the Spirit,
Oh, let the fire now fall;
The dross of sin consuming
As we upon Thee call.

Baptize me with the Spirit,
Uniting me with all,
Of every name and nation,
Who thus upon Thee call.

Baptize me, oh, baptize me,
I fully yield to Thee;
Thank God the cleansing current
Is rolling over me.

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