Thursday, September 03, 2020

2020.09.03 Hopewell @Home ▫ Ephesians 4:15

 Read Ephesians 4:15

Questions from the Scripture text: What does love do (not just say)? What does this “truthing” make us do? Into Whom do we grow? In how many areas do we grow? What body-part does this verse call the One into Whom we grow? By what title does it refer to Him?

In the previous verse, the apostle had warned us that one of the places that doctrinal diversity comes from is by “cunning craftiness and deceitful plotting.” Now, he tells us that love does exactly the opposite of that!

Literally, our verse begins, “but, truthing in love…” What does love do? It “truths.” This is far more than the “speaking” that most English translations insert to make sense of the interesting way in which the apostle speaks here.

It is a receiving of the truth as a gift from Christ (Ephesians 4:11–12)— both that we come under the ministry of evangelists and then pastor-teachers in the Word given by apostles and prophets, and that we also believe what that word teaches and commit to whatever it commands. It is a striving to keep together—both by keeping up ourselves, and by helping others come along—as our congregation grows in learning and understanding (Ephesians 4:13). It is receiving and believing and speaking and living… all according to the words on the pages of holy Scripture.

So, we truth because truthing is what love does. But we also truth because truthing is how Christians grow.

To ask if someone wishes to grow into Christ is basically to ask if someone is a Christian. If someone does not want to grow into Christ, this would immediately call into question any claim that he made to have saving faith in Christ. But, the only ones who wish to grow up into Christ are those who rejoice to have Christ as their Head, and to be members (joints/body-parts, cf. Ephesians 4:16) of His body.

OF COURSE we wish to grow up into Christ! But it can be surprising to discover how many believers don’t know that Jesus has a way of growing us up into Himself. This verse tells us: by love-driven truthing. Love does many things. But the thing that it does that results in our growing up into Christ is its truthing.

What aspects of Scripture teaching, then, should we be seeking to receive and believe and speak and live unitedly in our fellowship with one another? Well, in which ways should we wish to grow up into Christ? ALL of them! And that’s exactly what our Scripture says: that when we truth in love, that it is in all things that we grow up into Christ. His Word addresses every part of knowing Him, loving Him, and living for Him. Because it is His means for growing us up into Him in every single way!

Theological truth from the Bible will be at the heart of everything in a true and healthy church, precisely because theological truth from the Bible is at the heart of everything in a true and healthy Christian. It is how our Head grows us up into Himself in all things!

What are you doing to keep up with what your own congregation is learning from the Bible? How are you living it out? Whom are you helping bring along?

Suggested songs: ARP19B “The Lord’s Most Perfect Law” or TPH172 “Speak, O Lord”

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