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Ephesians 4 Expanded Bible (EXB)

The Unity of the Body

[L Therefore,] As a prisoner [3:1] ·for [because I belong to; or in] the Lord, I urge you to ·live [walk] in a manner worthy of the calling ·you have received [L to which you were called]. ·Always be [or Be completely] humble, gentle, and patient, ·accepting [putting up/bearing with] each other in love. Make every effort to preserve the unity ·of [provided by; available through] the Spirit ·in [through] the ·peace that joins us together [L bond of peace]. There is one body and one Spirit, and God called you to ·have one hope [L one hope of your calling]. There is one Lord, one faith, and one baptism. There is one God and Father of everything. ·He rules everything and is everywhere and is in everything [L …who is over all and through all and in all].

Each one of us has been given the ·special gift of grace [L grace; or gift], ·showing how generous Christ is [or in proportion to Christ’s gift; L according to the measure of Christ’s gift]. That is why it says in the Scriptures,

“When he ·went up [ascended] to the heights,
    he ·led a parade of captives [or took captives into captivity],
    and he gave gifts to people [Ps. 68:18].”

When it says, “He ·went up [ascended],” what does it mean? ·It means [L …except] that he first ·came down [descended] to the ·earth [or lower regions, namely the earth; or the depths of the earth; C probably refers to (1) the Incarnation, though possibly (2) Christ’s descent to Hades after his death (1 Pet. 3:19–20), or (3) Christ’s descent through the Spirit at Pentecost (Acts 2)]. 10 So the one who ·came down [descended] is the same one who ·went up [ascended] above all the heavens. ·Christ did that [L …in order] to fill ·everything with his presence [L all things]. 11 And ·Christ gave gifts to people—he made some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to go and tell the Good News, and some to have the work of caring for and teaching God’s people [L he himself gave apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors/shepherds, and teachers]. 12 ·Christ gave those gifts to prepare [L …to equip] God’s holy people for the work of serving, to make the body of Christ stronger. 13 This work must continue until we ·are all joined together in the same faith [or all reach unity in the faith] and in the same knowledge of the Son of God. We must become like ·a mature person [or the perfect Man; C Christ], ·growing until we become like Christ and have his perfection [L to the measure of the stature of Christ’s fullness].

14 Then we will no longer be ·babies [children]. We will not be tossed about like a ship that the waves carry one way and then another. We will not be ·influenced by every new teaching [L carried along by every wind of (false) teaching] we hear from people who are trying to ·fool [trick] us. They ·make plans [scheme] and try any kind of trick to fool people into following ·the wrong path [error; false teaching]. 15 ·No! [Instead; Rather] ·Speaking [or Living out; Practicing] the truth with love, we will grow up in every way into Christ, who is the head. 16 ·The whole body depends on Christ, and [L …through/by whom] all the parts of the body are joined and held together. Each ·part [supporting joint/ligament] ·does its own work [performs its function] to make the whole body grow and ·be strong with [to build itself up in] love.

The Way You Should Live

17 ·In the Lord’s name [or By the Lord’s authority; L In the Lord], I ·tell you [L speak and testify to] this. Do not continue ·living [walking] like ·those who do not believe [the pagans; L the Gentiles], whose thoughts are ·worth nothing [futile]. 18 They ·do not understand [L are darkened in their minds/understanding] and they are ·separated [excluded; alienated] from the life ·God gives [or God has; L of God] because of their ignorance ·and because of [or caused by] ·their stubbornness [or their closed minds; L the stubbornness of their heart/mind]. 19 They have lost ·all feeling of shame [or any sense of right and wrong; L all feeling/sensitivity], and they ·use their lives for doing evil [abandon themselves to indecency/depravity]. They ·continually want to do [or greedily pursue] all kinds of ·evil [impurity]. 20 But ·what you learned in Christ was not like this [or that is not how you learned about Christ; L you did not learn Christ that way]. 21 ·I know that [L …if indeed] you heard ·about him [or him], and you ·are in him, so you were taught the truth that is in Jesus [or were taught by him, because the truth is in Jesus]. 22 You were taught to ·leave [put off; lay aside] your old ·self [L person]—to stop living the evil way you lived before. That old self ·becomes worse [is decaying/being corrupted], because ·people are fooled by the evil things they want to do [L of the deceitfulness of their desires]. 23 But you were taught to be made new in ·your hearts [the spirit/attitude of your minds], 24 to ·become [put on; clothe yourself with] the new ·self [L person; or Man; C become like Christ]. That new person is created ·to be like God [or in God’s image; L according to God]—truly good and holy [or in the righteousness and holiness that comes from truth].

25 So you must stop telling lies. ·Tell each other the truth [L Let each one of you speak truthfully to his neighbor; Zech. 8:16], because we ·all belong to each other in the same body [L are members of one another]. 26 ·When you are angry, [or Be angry, and] do not sin [Ps. 4:4; C there is a time for righteous anger, but it must not result in sin], and ·be sure to stop being angry before the end of the day [L don’t let the sun set on your anger]. 27 Do not give the devil a ·way to defeat you [foothold; opportunity]. 28 Those who are stealing must stop stealing and start working. They should ·earn an honest living for themselves [do something good/useful with their hands]. Then they will have something to share with those who ·are poor [L have need].

29 Don’t ·say anything that will hurt others [L let any rotten/unhealthy word come from your mouth], but only say what is ·helpful [good] to ·make others stronger [build others up] ·and meet [L according to] their needs. Then what you say will ·do good [give grace; be a gift] to those who listen to you. 30 And do not ·make the Holy Spirit sad [grieve/bring sorrow to the Holy Spirit]. ·The Spirit is God’s proof that you belong to him and he will make you free when the final day comes […by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption]. 31 Do not be bitter or angry or ·mad [raging]. Never shout angrily or ·say things to hurt [slander; insult] others. ·Never do anything [Get rid of all kinds of] evil. 32 Be kind and ·loving [compassionate; tenderhearted] to each other, and forgive each other just as God forgave you in Christ.

Expanded Bible (EXB)

The Expanded Bible, Copyright © 2011 Thomas Nelson Inc. All rights reserved.

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