A note from our pastor:
“Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:”Ephesians 4:13
Good Morning Dearly Beloved,
If we are being honest, there are times when the complexity of the Apostle Paul’s writings cause problems and confusion for the bible reader. This particular verse, for example, is quite complex and sounds almost mystical. If not understood correctly, it appears to put an incredible burden on ministers and the disciples of Christ in general. However, rightly dividing the word allows a better understanding of this verse and a beauty to emerge.
First, this verse does not stand in isolation. The Apostle is continuing one thought from verse twelve through verse sixteen. The focus of all of these verses is around the gifts (apostles, prophets, evangelist, teachers) given to the church and the responsibility to preach the gospel for the edification of the church.
Second, by evidence, we know the gifts to the church of the apostles and prophets have expired, and as such, it is clear the Apostle is here referring to the role of teachers or pastors among the flock. The responsibility of the ministry now rests with these gifts, as it has since the early days of the New Testament church.
The Apostle, therefore, begins this verse with a time indicating phrase. “Till we all come”, is a phrase which means the prior item mentioned, the ministry, will continue until all of the saints reach a particular point. So, understanding this verse becomes about realizing what that point in time is going to be. When will the ministry to God’s people end?
The Apostle says, in simple and paraphrased terms, the ministry of the gospel will end when all of the elect come to a shared faith, when all have full knowledge of Jesus Christ, and when all are completely equipped to know God and Jesus Christ. If we believe this will happen during an earthly event it puts an incredible burden on the children of God. But the truth of the matter is, this will happen, but it will happen when Christ returns a second time to call his people home. When all of the elect are gathered together in heaven we will have perfect unity, we will have perfect knowledge, and we will be complete in our ability to serve Christ.
The message of this verse is one of comfort for the church. The gift of teachers and pastors, the preaching of the gospel, and the edifying of the body of Christ will continue until the Lord comes back again. Amen and amen!!
Our Prayers are with you daily,