Letter to the Ephesians

Letter to the Ephesians

Chapter 1

1 I am Paul, and I became an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God. I am writing to the holy people of God who lives in Ephesus, and serves faithfully to Jesus Christ.
2 Receive grace and peace from our God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ is blessed. We belong to Christ, and that is why God blessed us. He gave us full spiritual blessing which is stored in heaven.
4 He chose us in Christ before He created the world. He did it so that we would live in His love and be holy and blameless in the presence of God.
5 God decided in advance that He would adopt us through Jesus Christ. And He wanted to fulfill His plan.
6 God adopted us in His greatness, in His glory and in His grace which He poured on us through beloved Jesus.
7 Christ paid for our freedom from sin with His blood. God is full of grace, that is why He forgave us our sins.
8 God poured His grace on us in great abundance. He gave us all the wisdom and understanding.
9 God wanted to reveal to us the secret of His will. And from the very beginning He wanted to fulfill this plan through Christ.
10 The perfect time will come when God will bring together all that exists in heaven and on earth. And then Christ will rule over everything.
11 God planned to give us His inheritance. He decided in advance that we would receive this inheritance because we belong to Christ. And God fulfilled all His plans and His desires.
12 We came to Christ before you did. We put our hope in Him to enter into God’s greatness and glory.
13 You also heard the word of truth. It was the Good News that God wants to save you from sin. You believed in Christ, and God put on you the seal of the Holy Spirit which He promised to give to believers.
14 The Holy Spirit is a guaranty that we have an inheritance. Christ redeemed us, now we belong to God. And we will live in God’s greatness and in His glory.
15 I heard that you believe in Jesus Christ and you love the holy people of God.
16 So I regularly thank God for you and remember you in my prayers.
17 May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ give you the Spirit of wisdom. I pray that the Father of glory would give you the Spirit of revelation. And then you could understand fully who God is.
18 May God shine His light upon you. Then the eyes of your heart would see the hope and calling which God has for you. And you would fully realize what kind of riches, glory and God’s inheritance belong to the holy people of God.
19 We believe in Christ. And God fills us with His unlimited greatness and power. And I ask Him that you could realize it fully. God works in us with His mighty power.
20 And God worked in Christ with the same power when He raised Him from the dead. God sat Christ in heaven at His right hand and gave Him a position of authority.
21 God set Christ far above any ruler or authority. He gave Christ much more power than to any other person in a leadership position. God exalted Christ much higher than any name that exists in this age or will appear in the future.
22 God submitted all things under the feet of Christ. God set Him above all, and Christ became the head of the Church.
23 The Church is the Body of Christ. Christ filled the Church with His presence. And He also filled with Himself everything around.

Chapter 2

1 In the past you lived in sin, and it made you dead.
2 You acted the way this world does. And the world obeys the ruler who reigns in the air. The ruler is the spirit. And now he works in the people who disobey God.
3 We used to behave like everybody else, and we were burning with lust which lived in our physical body. We did what came into our minds. We acted the way our body wanted to act. And we were children of anger by nature like the rest of the people.
4 But God is full of great love and rich in mercy. That is why He showed us His love.
5 In the past we disobeyed God, and it made us dead. But God made us alive with Christ and saved us by His grace.
6 God resurrected us with Him and seated us in heaven in Jesus Christ.
7 In the future God will show us incredible wealth of His grace and kindness in Christ.
8 You believed in Jesus, so God saved you by grace. No one can deserve such a gift from God.
9 So let no one praise himself that he deserved salvation by his deeds.
10 When we came to Jesus Christ, God made us new creation. And now we do the good works which He planned for us long ago.
11 You were born as the Gentiles, and the Jews call you “uncircumcised”. But the Jews circumcise themselves, and they call themselves “circumcised”.
12 God gave His promises and made an Unbreakable Agreement with the people of Israel. When you lived without Christ, you did not belong to God’s people. You had no hope and had no God in your life.
13 At that time you were far away from God. But now you belong to Jesus Christ. His blood made you clean you from sin, and you came close to God.
14 Christ reconciled the Jews and the Gentiles, and made them one. He destroyed the wall and the barrier which stood between us.
15 The Jews were hostile to the Gentiles because of the Law of Moses, the Commandments and the rules. But Christ destroyed the hostility with His physical death and cancelled the Law of Moses, the Commandments and the rules. He created one new nation out of the Jews and the Gentiles inside of Himself. Christ brought us peace.
16 Christ killed hostility on the cross. And He united the Jews and the Gentiles in one Body through the cross and reconciled them with God.
17 In the past, the Gentiles were far away from God, and the Jews were near to God. But Christ came to both of them and brought them the Good News of peace.
18 Through Christ the Gentiles and the Jews come to the Father in one Spirit.
19 Now you are no longer strangers to one another like foreigners. But you became the citizens of the Kingdom of God like the other believers.
20 You became part of the house which God builds on the foundation of the apostles and prophets. And Jesus Christ Himself is the first and main stone in the foundation of this house.
21 On this stone God is constructing a building where everything fits together perfectly. The building grows, and we become a holy temple where the Lord lives.
22 In Christ you also became a part of this building, and in this building God lives by His Spirit.

Chapter 3

1 I, Paul, became a prisoner because I spoke to you, to the Gentiles, about Jesus Christ.
2 For your sake God gave me His grace, and you heard about how to build the house of God.
3 God showed me a secret through revelation, and I already wrote about it briefly.
4 Read this letter, and you can learn how I understand the secret which God revealed to me through Christ.
5 People who lived in previous generations did not know this secret. But now the Holy Spirit opened it to the holy apostles and prophets.
6 And this is what the secret is about. Both the Gentiles and the Jews who believe in the Good News belong to Jesus Christ. They became members of one Body. That is why both the Gentiles and the Jews got access to the same promises of God.
7 I experienced the power of God and received grace. God made me His minister so that I could spread the Good News.
8 I am the most unworthy of all the holy people of God. But God gave this grace to me, and I tell the Gentiles the Good News about the riches of Christ which is impossible to measure.
9 God created everything through Jesus Christ. And from the very beginning He did not open the secret how the Gentiles would participate in His plan. But God gave me grace, and I reveal this secret to everyone.
10 God created the Church, and through the Church He showed the rich variety of His wisdom to the rulers and authorities which are in the heavenly realms.
11 From the very beginning of time God had a plan which He fulfilled through our Lord Jesus Christ.
12 We believe in Jesus, and through Him we come to God boldly and confidently.
13 I suffer because of you, but I ask you, do not get discouraged because of this. My sufferings will bring you to glory.
14 And I bow down on my knees before the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
15 I bow down before God who gave the name to every family that exists in heaven and on earth.
16 May God make you rich with His glory. May His Spirit make your inner man powerful.
17 Let Christ live in your hearts through faith.
18 Love one another, and you will grow deep roots and stand on a strong foundation. Together with all the holy people of God you will be able to understand that the love of Christ extends far and wide, deep and high.
19 Christ loves us so much that it transcends all understanding. I pray that together with all the holy people of God you would experience the love of Christ. And then God will completely fill you with His presence.
20 God works powerfully in us. And He is able to do immeasurably more than what we ask Him or think about.
21 Let through all ages, all generations of people glorify God in the Church which belongs to Jesus Christ. Amen.

Chapter 4

1 So I became a prisoner because I preached about the Lord. And I beg you that the way you live would be according to the calling which you received from God.
2 Do not rise above one another. Be kind and be very patient. Love and accept one another despite the weaknesses.
3 Do your best and live in peace. Keep peace, and you will keep spiritual unity.
4 You became members of one Body, and God filled you with one Spirit. You received a calling from God, and He gave you one hope.
5 You believe in one Lord. You confess one faith, and you took one baptism.
6 One God became the Father to all of us. And He reigns over all of us, works through all of us, and lives in all of us.
7 Each of us received grace. And Christ gave different abilities to each one of us.
8 So the Scripture says, “He rose to a high place, took captives into captivity, and distributed gifts to the people.”
9 But first Christ came down to earth to the deepest places, and then He rose up to a high place.
10 Christ came down. And the same Christ rose high above all heavens and filled everything with His presence.
11 Christ appointed in the Church apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers.
12 They equip the holy people of God, and they act and serve. This way the Body of Christ grows and becomes strong.
13 Let’s reach the unity in faith. We must aim to understand more and more who the Son of God is. Let’s become mature and fully grow up in Christ. Then we will meet the standard which Christ made for us.
14 We should not remain babies who doubt and follow the changing winds of different teachings. Let’s grow up. And then tricky people will not involve us into their cunning schemes, and they will not mislead us.
15 Let’s speak the truth with love. Let’s grow up and in everything become like Christ who is the head of the Church.
16 Christ unites the whole Body and holds it together with various connections. All members of the Body match one another exactly. Every part of the Body does its work, everyone grows and becomes strong because of love.
17 I ask and insist in the name of the Lord: do not live like other nations. You behaved like the Gentiles in the past. The Gentiles think of meaningless things, and they act in the same way.
18 The Gentiles do not know God and make their hearts hard. The darkness fills their minds and separates them from the life of God.
19 They do not feel any shame. They give themselves completely to immoral activities and practice disgusting things.
20 But you learned from Christ, and you must not do such things.
21 The truth is in Jesus. And when you got to know about Him, He taught you the truth.
22 So do not go back to the old way of life. Take off the old sinful nature from your inner person. Your inner person used to live in deception, used to burn with lust and used to destroy himself.
23 Let the Spirit renew your mind.
24 Put the new nature of God on your inner person who is created in the image of God. And your inner person will receive God’s righteousness, holiness, and truth.
25 We became members of one Body of Christ. So do not lie, but tell the truth to one another.
26 Do not insult one another when anger is boiling inside of you. Anger blinds in such a way that sunlight disappears.
27 Do not give any area of your life to the devil.
28 Work and help needy people. Do good with your hands and do not steal if you used to steal.
29 Do not use abusive words in your speech. Speak only kind words. They strengthen your faith and bring grace to those who listen to you.
30 Do not make the Holy Spirit sad. You belong to God, and He put on you the seal of His Spirit for the day of redemption.
31 Do not accumulate bitterness and do not become furious. Do not get angry and do not shout. Do not insult one another and do not participate in any evil activities.
32 Show kindness and compassion. Forgive one another the same way God forgave you in Christ.

Chapter 5

1 God loves you, you are His children, so imitate God in everything.
2 Let’s love one another as Christ loves us. He gave His life for our sins and sacrificed Himself. And God accepted the sacrifice of Christ as pleasant aroma.
3 You must have nothing to do with sexual immorality, impure things, and greed. Live a worthy life and behave the way the holy people of God behave.
4 Do not say impure words, do not take part in silly conversations and do not tell rude jokes. On the opposite be polite with one another.
5 Sexually immoral person and the one who does impure things will not receive the inheritance of the Kingdom of God. And a greedy person who worships things like an idol will not receive the inheritance of this Kingdom either. You should know that Christ and God rule in this Kingdom.
6 God will be angry with the people who disobey Him, and deceive you with empty words.
7 So have nothing to do with such people.
8 In the past the darkness filled your lives. But now the light that the Lord gave you shines in you. You are the children of the light. So live in such a way that you would spread the light.
9 Do good deeds and behave righteously. Study the truth well, and you will bear the fruit of the Spirit.
10 Fulfill the plans of God and please God.
11 Do not take part in the fruitless activities which people do in the darkness. On the opposite, openly show your negative attitude towards such things.
12 It is shameful even to talk about the things that people do in secret.
13 We bring light when we openly show our negative attitudes towards such things.
14 So God says, “Sleeper, wake up and rise from the dead. And Christ will shine on you with His light.”
15 So think and then take actions. Behave wisely and do not act like fools.
16 Do not waste your time on the day when evil comes to you.
17 But you must understand what God wants to do. And then you will act thoughtfully.
18 Do not get drunk with wine which will lead you to an immoral life, but instead be filled with the Spirit.
19 Sing songs of praise from the Psalms which King David wrote. Encourage one another with solemn hymns of worship. Glorify the Lord with the songs which the Spirit gives you. And let your hearts sing and praise the Lord.
20 Always thank God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ in any circumstances.
21 Submit to one another, and this way you will show that you have a great reverence to God.
22 Wives, obey your husbands, and this way you will show that you obey the Lord.
23 A husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the Church. Christ does not only rule the Church. But He also saves the Church because the Church is His Body.
24 The Church obeys Christ. And let wives also obey their husbands in everything.
25 Husbands, love your wives as Christ loved the Church and gave His life for the Church.
26 Christ washed the Church with the Word like with water. He cleansed and made the Church holy.
27 Now the Church stands before Christ, and it is filled with God’s glory. The Church has no stain, no defect, and no fault. The Church became holy and blameless.
28 Husbands must love their wives as their bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.
29 A man never hates his physical body. On the opposite, everyone feeds himself and takes care of his body. In the same way the Lord feeds the Church and takes care of it.
30 The Church is the Body of Christ, and we are members of His Body. God created the Church from the physical body of Christ and from His bone. The same way as God created Eve from the physical body of Adam and from his bone.
31 So a man separates himself from his father and mother, and attaches to his wife. And the two unite into one in the physical body.
32 And I say, there is a great secret hidden in this, and the secret relates to Christ and the Church.
33 Every husband must love his wife as he loves himself. And his wife must greatly respect her husband.

Chapter 6

1 Children, obey your parents because it is correct. And this way you will show that you obey the Lord.
2 “Treat your father and mother with respect,” — this is the first commandment in which God gives a promise:
3 “Everything will go well with you, and you will live a long life on the earth.”
4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, it annoys them. But raise them up and discipline them according to the teaching of the Lord.
5 Slaves, obey your earthly masters with great respect and dedication. Obey them as you would obey Christ.
6 Always please them, and not only when they are watching you. You became the slaves of Christ, so do the will of God with all your heart.
7 Serve your masters as diligently as you would serve the Lord, and not the people.
8 Do what is good. Be sure that for this the Lord will reward every slave and every free man with good.
9 And you, masters, do good to your slaves and do not threaten them. Remember that there is one Lord who is in heaven, and He is above you and above the slaves. And He does not show favoritism to you or to the slaves.
10 Brothers, make yourselves strong with the power and strength which belong to the Lord.
11 Put on the full military armor that God gives. And then you will be able to resist the evil plans of the devil.
12 We fight against the enemy who has no blood and no physical body. Our war is against the rulers, against the authorities, against world powers which rule the darkness of this world. These evil spirits belong to the heavenly realms, and we are fighting against them.
13 So take the full military armor that God gives. And you will be able to oppose the enemy on the day when evil comes to you. You will overcome everything and stand after the battle.
14 Take the truth and put it on like a military belt. Take the righteousness of God and put it on like a breastplate. And this way you will stand after the battle.
15 The Good News about Christ brings peace. Take the peace and put it on your feet like shoes. Get ready to spread the Good News.
16 But the most important is to take faith and use it as a shield. The devil flames the arrows in the fire and aims at you, but you will be able to extinguish the flames of fire with the shield of faith.
17 Take salvation and put it on your head like a helmet. Take the Word of God which the Spirit speaks and use it as a sword.
18 Pray in the Spirit at any time. In any prayer ask God to help you with your needs and with the needs of the holy people of God. Do not forget about it.
19 Pray also for me. Ask God that He would give me right words. Pray that I would boldly preach the Good News about Christ. And then the secret that God revealed to me I would be able to tell others.
20 I spoke the Good News about Christ, and because of that people put me in chains. But even in chains I carry a message from God. Pray for me, I must be brave. I must boldly preach about Christ.
21 I want you to know what kind of situation I experience and what I am doing. Our dear brother Tychicus serves faithfully to the Lord, and he will tell you about everything.
22 I am sending Tychicus to you. He will tell you about everything what is happening with us and your hearts will calm down.
23 Brothers, may God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ fill you with peace, love and faith.
24 Forever love our Lord Jesus Christ, and you will live in His grace. Amen.

STAN & LANA

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