Behavior Becoming to a Believer-Ephesians 4:25-32

Ephesians 4:25-32Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body. 26 “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27 and do not give the devil a foothold. 28 He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need. 29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”

Efesini 4:25-32 “Perciò, bandita la menzogna, ognuno dica la verità al suo prossimo perché siamo membra gli uni degli altri. 26 Adiratevi e non peccate; il sole non tramonti sopra la vostra ira 27 e non fate posto al diavolo. 28 Chi rubava non rubi più, ma si affatichi piuttosto a lavorare onestamente con le {proprie} mani, affinché abbia qualcosa da dare a colui che è nel bisogno. 29 Nessuna cattiva parola esca dalla vostra bocca; ma se ne avete qualcuna buona, che edifichi secondo il bisogno, ditela affinché conferisca grazia a chi l’ascolta. 30 Non rattristate lo Spirito Santo di Dio con il quale siete stati suggellati per il giorno della redenzione. 31 Via da voi ogni amarezza, ogni cruccio e ira e clamore e parola offensiva con ogni sorta di cattiveria! 32 Siate {invece} benevoli e misericordiosi gli uni verso gli altri, perdonandovi a vicenda come anche Dio vi ha perdonati in Cristo.”

     Paul concludes these thoughts to the Ephesians on Christian behavior with a series of short concise statements. He had previously spoken generally of these truths but now he addresses them more specifically. As you read through these, allow yourself to be challenged, convicted or encouraged. Let’s examine them in a positive way: Paul instructs us to speak the truth because we are all one body; when you are legitimately angry, control and resolve it quickly so it doesn’t become a stronghold of sin or root of bitterness; don’t steal (which was somewhat common among the Ephesians) but work to support yourself and others in need; communicate helpful and beneficial words to others so as to not grieve the Holy Spirit; remove the six vices (bitterness, rage and anger, brawling (shouting), slander, and every form of malice); be kind, compassionate and forgiving to one another.

In the middle of the list, Paul places an overall general message: these corrupt behaviors grieve the Holy Spirit. These actions are all related to sins against one another. Everyone wants the blessing of the Lord but if we are not careful, we can be our own worst enemy. In submitting to the devil’s trap, we not only hurt others, but harm ourselves as well.

Here is a simple summary from Paul’s words: when we behave in a way that is appropriate to the character of Christ, we can expect God’s blessing. Amen!

Pray with me: Lord, I know that the fellowship of the Holy Spirit is in me and He can be grieved when I fail in the practical aspects of my faith. Help me to listen to His voice; not simply for the blessing of God but because it is the right behavior for me as a believer.

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