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Be Angry and Sin Not – Eph. 4:26-27

Our world is full of angry people.They are out there on the roads, in the office, and at home.You will find them on Twitter, Facebook, and the nightly news.Like the frogs, gnats, and flies in the Egyptian plagues, angry people are everywhere.
And anger is generally ugly.It was probably anger that lay behind the apostles’ desire to call down fire on a village that wouldn’t receive Christ.To these apostles our Lord replied, “Ye know not what spirit ye are of” (Lk. 9:55) and he rebuked them.It was anger that caused Moses to “speak unadvisedly with his lips” and to strike the rock when he should only have spoken to it (Ps. 106:32-33).It lost him the opportunity to enter the Promised Land.
Anger is so serious that our Lord likened it to murder: “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: but I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment” (Mt…
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“But you have not so learned Christ” – Ephesians 4:17-24

In the tale, The Emperor’s New Clothes by Hans Christian Andersen, we are told how a couple of swindlers were able to dupe a king and his counselors and indeed an entire city into believing that they had made the emperor a suit of clothes which in fact really didn’t exist.The key behind their fraud was that they were able to convince the people of the city that the fabric had magical properties.The magical property was that the clothes they made with this wonderful fabric became invisible to anyone who was unusually stupid or unfit for office.Since no one wanted to admit they couldn’t see the clothes because they had believed the tale of the fabric’s supposed magical properties, everyone agreed with the swindlers that the clothes for the emperor were magnificent.And so the emperor went on parade with absolutely nothing on.(This is almost like some of the parades in our cities, but that’s another story.)It took a child to admit what was obvious to everyone, and though at first people t…

Why we need spiritual gifts – Ephesians 4:11-16

Last time, we saw that our Lord is the source of spiritual gifts and that the significance of the spiritual gifts lies in the fact that they are the fruit of our Lord’s redemptive work.However, this does not fully unpack the reasons for which the spiritual gifts have been given.Paul does that in the verses before us.In verse 12, we are given the purpose of spiritual gifts: “for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.”The main idea in that sentence is “perfecting” which can mean to equip, to complete, to train, or to mend.The idea that is common to all these meanings is taking something which is lacking in some sense and completing it so that no longer lacks that thing.The church presently is imperfect and incomplete, and so the Lord has given gifts to the church to make up for that imperfection.You see it also in the word “edifying,” which means to build up.Again, you have this idea of taking a building which is incomplete an…