Add parallel Print Page Options

It is a consequence of this that I, Sha’ul, am a prisoner of the Messiah Yeshua on behalf of you Gentiles. I assume that you have heard of the work God in his grace has given me to do for your benefit, and that it was by a revelation that this secret plan was made known to me. I have already written about it briefly, and if you read what I have written, you will grasp how I understand this secret plan concerning the Messiah. In past generations it was not made known to mankind, as the Spirit is now revealing it to his emissaries and prophets, that in union with the Messiah and through the Good News the Gentiles were to be joint heirs, a joint body and joint sharers with the Jews in what God has promised. I became a servant of this Good News by God’s gracious gift, which he gave me through the operation of his power. To me, the least important of all God’s holy people, was given this privilege of announcing to the Gentiles the Good News of the Messiah’s unfathomable riches, and of letting everyone see how this secret plan is going to work out. This plan, kept hidden for ages by God, the Creator of everything, 10 is for the rulers and authorities in heaven to learn, through the existence of the Messianic Community, how many-sided God’s wisdom is. 11 This accords with God’s age-old purpose, accomplished in the Messiah Yeshua, our Lord. 12 In union with him, through his faithfulness, we have boldness and confidence when we approach God. 13 So I ask you not to be discouraged by the troubles I endure on your behalf — it is all for your glory.

14 For this reason, I fall on my knees before the Father, 15 from whom every family in heaven and on earth receives its character. 16 I pray that from the treasures of his glory he will empower you with inner strength by his Spirit, 17 so that the Messiah may live in your hearts through your trusting. Also I pray that you will be rooted and founded in love, 18 so that you, with all God’s people, will be given strength to grasp the breadth, length, height and depth of the Messiah’s love, 19 yes, to know it, even though it is beyond all knowing, so that you will be filled with all the fullness of God.

20 Now to him who by his power working in us is able to do far beyond anything we can ask or imagine, 21 to him be glory in the Messianic Community and in the Messiah Yeshua from generation to generation forever. Amen.

Therefore I, the prisoner united with the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called.

Always be humble, gentle and patient, bearing with one another in love, and making every effort to preserve the unity the Spirit gives through the binding power of shalom. There is one body and one Spirit, just as when you were called you were called to one hope. And there is one Lord, one trust, one immersion, and one God, the Father of all, who rules over all, works through all and is in all.

Each one of us, however, has been given grace to be measured by the Messiah’s bounty. This is why it says,

“After he went up into the heights,
he led captivity captive
and he gave gifts to mankind.”[a]

Now this phrase, “he went up,” what can it mean if not that he first went down into the lower parts, that is, the earth? 10 The one who went down is himself the one who also went up, far above all of heaven, in order to fill all things. 11 Furthermore, he gave some people as emissaries, some as prophets, some as proclaimers of the Good News, and some as shepherds and teachers. 12 Their task is to equip God’s people for the work of service that builds the body of the Messiah, 13 until we all arrive at the unity implied by trusting and knowing the Son of God, at full manhood, at the standard of maturity set by the Messiah’s perfection.

14 We will then no longer be infants tossed about by the waves and blown along by every wind of teaching, at the mercy of people clever in devising ways to deceive. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in every respect grow up into him who is the head, the Messiah. 16 Under his control, the whole body is being fitted and held together by the support of every joint, with each part working to fulfill its function; this is how the body grows and builds itself up in love.

17 Therefore I say this — indeed, in union with the Lord I insist on it: do not live any longer as the pagans live, with their sterile ways of thinking. 18 Their intelligence has been shrouded in darkness, and they are estranged from the life of God, because of the ignorance in them, which in turn comes from resisting God’s will. 19 They have lost all feeling, so they have abandoned themselves to sensuality, practicing any kind of impurity and always greedy for more. 20 But this is not the lesson you learned from the Messiah! 21 If you really listened to him and were instructed about him, then you learned that since what is in Yeshua is truth, 22 then, so far as your former way of life is concerned, you must strip off your old nature, because your old nature is thoroughly rotted by its deceptive desires; 23 and you must let your spirits and minds keep being renewed, 24 and clothe yourselves with the new nature created to be godly, which expresses itself in the righteousness and holiness that flow from the truth.

25 Therefore, stripping off falsehood, let everyone speak truth with his neighbor,[b] because we are intimately related to each other as parts of a body. 26 Be angry, but don’t sin[c] — don’t let the sun go down before you have dealt with the cause of your anger; 27 otherwise you leave room for the Adversary.

28 The thief must stop stealing; instead, he should make an honest living by his own efforts. This way he will be able to share with those in need.

29 Let no harmful language come from your mouth, only good words that are helpful in meeting the need, words that will benefit those who hear them. 30 Don’t cause grief to God’s Ruach HaKodesh, for he has stamped you as his property until the day of final redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, violent assertiveness and slander, along with all spitefulness. 32 Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted; and forgive each other, just as in the Messiah God has also forgiven you.

So imitate God, as his dear children; and live a life of love, just as also the Messiah loved us, indeed, on our behalf gave himself up as an offering, as a slaughtered sacrifice to God with a pleasing fragrance. Among you there should not even be mentioned sexual immorality, or any kind of impurity, or greed; these are utterly inappropriate for God’s holy people. Also out of place are obscenity and stupid talk or coarse language; instead, you should be giving thanks. For of this you can be sure: every sexually immoral, impure or greedy person — that is, every idol-worshipper — has no share in the Kingdom of the Messiah and of God. Let no one deceive you with empty talk; for it is because of these things that God’s judgment is coming on those who disobey him. So don’t become partners with them!

For you used to be darkness; but now, united with the Lord, you are light. Live like children of light, for the fruit of the light is in every kind of goodness, rightness and truth — 10 try to determine what will please the Lord. 11 Have nothing to do with the deeds produced by darkness, but instead expose them, 12 for it is shameful even to speak of the things these people do in secret. 13 But everything exposed to the light is revealed clearly for what it is, 14 since anything revealed is a light. This is why it says,

“Get up, sleeper! Arise from the dead,
and the Messiah will shine on you!”

15 Therefore, pay careful attention to how you conduct your life — live wisely, not unwisely. 16 Use your time well, for these are evil days. 17 So don’t be foolish, but try to understand what the will of the Lord is.

18 Don’t get drunk with wine, because it makes you lose control. Instead, keep on being filled with the Spirit — 19 sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs to each other; sing to the Lord and make music in your heart to him; 20 always give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah.

21 Submit to one another in fear of the Messiah. 22 Wives should submit to their husbands as they do to the Lord; 23 because the husband is head of the wife, just as the Messiah, as head of the Messianic Community, is himself the one who keeps the body safe. 24 Just as the Messianic Community submits to the Messiah, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

25 As for husbands, love your wives, just as the Messiah loved the Messianic Community, indeed, gave himself up on its behalf, 26 in order to set it apart for God, making it clean through immersion in the mikveh, so to speak, 27 in order to present the Messianic Community to himself as a bride to be proud of, without a spot, wrinkle or any such thing, but holy and without defect. 28 This is how husbands ought to love their wives — like their own bodies; for the man who loves his wife is loving himself. 29 Why, no one ever hated his own flesh! On the contrary, he feeds it well and takes care of it, just as the Messiah does the Messianic Community, 30 because we are parts of his Body. 31 “Therefore a man will leave his father and mother and remain with his wife, and the two will become one.”[d] 32 There is profound truth hidden here, which I say concerns the Messiah and the Messianic Community. 33 However, the text also applies to each of you individually: let each man love his wife as he does himself, and see that the wife respects her husband.

Children, what you should do in union with the Lord is obey your parents, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother” — this is the first commandment that embodies a promise — “so that it may go well with you, and you may live long in the Land.”[e]

Fathers, don’t irritate your children and make them resentful; instead, raise them with the Lord’s kind of discipline and guidance.

Slaves, obey your human masters with the same fear, trembling and single-heartedness with which you obey the Messiah. Don’t obey just to win their favor, serving only when they are watching you; but serve as slaves of the Messiah, doing what God wants with all your heart. Work willingly as slaves, as people do who are serving not merely human beings but the Lord. Remember that whoever does good work, whether he be a slave or a free man, will be rewarded by the Lord.

And masters, treat your slaves the same way. Don’t threaten them. Remember that in heaven both you and they have the same Master, and he has no favorites.

10 Finally, grow powerful in union with the Lord, in union with his mighty strength! 11 Use all the armor and weaponry that God provides, so that you will be able to stand against the deceptive tactics of the Adversary. 12 For we are not struggling against human beings, but against the rulers, authorities and cosmic powers governing this darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realm. 13 So take up every piece of war equipment God provides; so that when the evil day comes, you will be able to resist; and when the battle is won, you will still be standing. 14 Therefore, stand! Have the belt of truth buckled around your waist,[f] put on righteousness for a breastplate,[g] 15 and wear on your feet the readiness that comes from the Good News of shalom.[h] 16 Always carry the shield of trust, with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the Evil One. 17 And take the helmet of deliverance;[i] along with the sword given by the Spirit, that is, the Word of God; 18 as you pray at all times, with all kinds of prayers and requests, in the Spirit, vigilantly and persistently, for all God’s people.

19 And pray for me, too, that whenever I open my mouth, the words will be given to me to be bold in making known the secret of the Good News, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may speak boldly, the way I should.

21 Now, so that you may also be informed about how I am and what I am doing, Tychicus, the dear brother and a faithful worker for the Lord, will tell you everything. 22 This is the very reason I have sent him to you, so that you may know how we are getting along and so that he may comfort and encourage you.

23 Shalom to the brothers. May God the Father and the Lord Yeshua the Messiah give you love and trust. 24 Grace be to all who love our Lord Yeshua the Messiah with undying love.

From: Sha’ul and Timothy, slaves of the Messiah Yeshua

To: All God’s people united with the Messiah Yeshua and living in Philippi, along with the congregation leaders and shammashim:

Grace to you and shalom from God our Father and the Lord Yeshua the Messiah.

I thank my God every time I think of you. Whenever I pray for all of you I always pray with joy, because you have shared in proclaiming the Good News from the very first day until now. And I am sure of this: that the One who began a good work among you will keep it growing until it is completed on the Day of the Messiah Yeshua. It is right for me to think this way about you all, because I have you on my heart; for whether I am in chains or defending and establishing the Good News, you are all sharing with me in this privileged work. God can testify how I long for all of you with the deep affection of the Messiah Yeshua.

And this is my prayer: that your love may more and more overflow in fullness of knowledge and depth of discernment, 10 so that you will be able to determine what is best and thus be pure and without blame for the Day of the Messiah, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Yeshua the Messiah — to the glory and praise of God.

12 Now, brothers, I want you to know that what has happened to me has helped in advancing the Good News. 13 It has become clear to the whole palace and to everyone else that it is because of the Messiah that I am in chains. 14 Also, my being in prison has given most of the brothers in the Lord confidence, so that they have become much more bold in speaking the word of God fearlessly. 15 True, some are proclaiming the Messiah out of jealousy and rivalry, but others are doing it in goodwill. 16 The latter act from love, aware that I am put where I am for defending the Good News; 17 while the former announce the Messiah out of selfish ambition, with impure motives, supposing they can stir up trouble for me in prison. 18 But so what? All that matters is that in every way, whether honestly or in pretense, the Messiah is being proclaimed; and in that I rejoice.

Yes, and I will continue to rejoice, 19 for I know that this will work out for my deliverance,[j] because of your prayers and the support I get from the Spirit of Yeshua the Messiah. 20 It all accords with my earnest expectation and hope that I will have nothing to be ashamed of; but rather, now, as always, the Messiah will be honored by my body, whether it is alive or dead. 21 For to me, life is the Messiah, and death is gain. 22 But if by living on in the body I can do fruitful work, then I don’t know which to choose. 23 I am caught in a dilemma: my desire is to go off and be with the Messiah — that is better by far — 24 but because of you, the greater need is to stay on in the body. 25 Yes, I am convinced of this; so I know I will stay on with you in order to help you progress in the faith and have joy in it. 26 Then, through my being with you again, you will have even greater reason for boasting about the Messiah Yeshua.

27 Only conduct your lives in a way worthy of the Good News of the Messiah; so that whether I come and see you or I hear about you from a distance, you stand firm, united in spirit, fighting with one accord for the faith of the Good News, 28 not frightened by anything the opposition does. This will be for them an indication that they are headed for destruction and you for deliverance. And this is from God; 29 because for the Messiah’s sake it has been granted to you not only to trust in him but also to suffer on his behalf, 30 to fight the same battles you once saw me fight and now hear that I am still fighting.

Footnotes

  1. Ephesians 4:8 Psalm 68:19(18)
  2. Ephesians 4:25 Zechariah 8:16
  3. Ephesians 4:26 Psalm 4:5(4)
  4. Ephesians 5:31 Genesis 2:24
  5. Ephesians 6:3 Exodus 20:12; Deuteronomy 5:16
  6. Ephesians 6:14 Isaiah 11:5
  7. Ephesians 6:14 Isaiah 59:17
  8. Ephesians 6:15 Isaiah 52:7
  9. Ephesians 6:17 Isaiah 59:17
  10. Philippians 1:19 Job 13:16

Bible Gateway Recommends

The Complete Jewish Study Bible
The Complete Jewish Study Bible
Retail: $49.95
Our Price: $25.99
Save: $23.96 (48%)
4.5 of 5.0 stars