Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism,  one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all.”- {Ephesians 4:1-6}.


Relationships can be hard, and are because of our sin. Sin distorts, divides,dishonors God and destroys relationships. Sin is lawlessness, and is devoid of love. Love that is selfless, sacrificial, seeking the highest good of the other person, seeking or demanding nothing in return. It is only possible as we are in submission to the Holy Spirit trusting Him to produce this love in and through us -{ Read Eph 5:18; Gal 5:22-23; 1 Cor 13;4-7} .

In the verse in Ephesians, Paul had in chapter 1 verse 3 – 14, given the believers the foundation of How God has blessed them “In Christ,” and reasons for them to “bless” Him. When God “Bless’s” us, He does good to us. When we “bless” God, we “speak well of”Him, Praise Him. So as he grounds them in their position and privileges they have “In Christ,” now he continues on on how they are to love, the life they are to practice, habitually!

Practice comes after Position. Know your position and it gives motivation for practice for Jesus sake!

In Ephesians 4 Paul is speaking to them of how to “walk worthy of The LORD, and how to have unity in the church. Unity is not “uniformity,” such as everyone wears the same school uniform or has the same haircut, for they are externals,but it has to do with the internal, the heart!. “… God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”-{1 Sam 16:7}. For example legalistic people are taken up with externals and try and force others to do likewise to be “spiritual!’ Forcing people to “conform,” rather than the Spirit bringing about change of thinking, actions an character, through submission to His Word and forming Christ in them. ”  “-{Gal 4:19}. Paul’s goal was Christ would be formed, developed in them, not that they externally conform but inwardly be transformed into the likeness of Christ. That’s one difference between legalism and Love. Unity is a Grace  that comes from within, Uniformity is a pressure from without.

Legalist’s want people to conform to them, love wants people to conform to CHRIST!

Walking worthy of The LORD will be manifested in walking in unity. But How?

Paul shows that unity is inner attitudes and outward actions that  bring about true “unity.”

 In verses 2- Paul mentions 5 INNER ATTITUDES he wants accepted, adopted and applied to promote spiritual unity!

Love behaves with humility, gentleness, patiently, and note  love, gentleness, patience are all aspects of the fruit the Holy Spirit produces in a life that is yielded by faith to Him. -{Read Gal 5:22-23}. And we need His power, perspective, influence to live out this life and we can as He has provided His Word and Spirit to enlighten us and empower us. Paul in Ephesians 3 prays that they would be strengthened, where? Internally! And it takes the Holy Spirit to inwardly strengthen us to live this life and as He walk in obedience to him , his Word this life will be produced in and through us. These attitudes of Grace. grace because they are gifts of God to us for the benefit of…others… for His Glory!

1.”Be Humble” – Speaks of an attitude, to think lowly of oneself, an absent of arrogance. The thinking that does not see oneself as too high to serve others. Paul put it this way in Philippians 2:3-5, “Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus. ” Humility is a proper view of oneself. The realization of what we were before The LORD Jesus Christ saved us, and the realization whatever we are or have now is because of Christ! We are recipients of the amazing grace and love of God “In Christ.”

We are to think. Think Right according to God’s Word. Let His Word GUIDE OUR THINKING, RENEWING HOW WE THINK! -{Read Rom 12;2; Phil 4:8; Psalm 1:2} And part of the Greek word for humility is to “Think” We can think right and have a right attitude towards ourselves because of the high calling that is ours in Christ to walk worthy. To Think lowly of ourselves and highly of the LORD Jesus! The Humble think much of Christ, His sacrifice, His Love, His cross, His mercy, His giving Himself for His enemies, his long-suffering. He is the focus, contemplation and in light of  His great love gives the Christian true perspective of how much they are recipients of a love undeserving and the ability to boast in Him and not self. “But may it never be that I would boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. “-{Gal 6:14}. Humility gives us the ability to think right about ourselves the Lord and others!

Humility is an absence of arrogance, pride. There is economical pride. There is Academic pride. There is Athletic pride. There is national pride. There is religious pride.There is  ride in our natural or even spiritual abilities.  There is pride in our boasts of what we have or what we believe we will have. There is arrogance, pride of various kinds, someone wanting to put someone else down and build one self up to seem superior. It is sin, when that is your identity, boast, rather than Christ. It shows a mind, a heart that is lifted up, deceived, deluded and dishonors the LORD.

The LORD has means to help us develop and maintain humility. Paul testified of this when he wrote,

For we do not want you to be unaware, brethren, of our affliction which came to us in Asia, that we were burdened excessively, beyond our strength, so that we despaired even of life;]indeed, we had the sentence of death within ourselves so that we would not trust in ourselves, but in God who raises the dead; who delivered us from so great a peril of death, and will deliver us, He on whom we have set our hope. And He will yet deliver us, “-{2 Cor 1:8-10}. He says “so that” which is the explanation to follow, namely that they would not trust in themselves but in God who raises the dead! Trusting in ourselves is a lack of humility, it is faulty thinking, it is placing self in place of God as “Sovereign!” The LORD used the trial to weak them of self sufficiency onto God dependency!

In 2 Cor 12, Paul testifies of the great visions he had and we read his testimony, ” Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me—to keep me from exalting myself!”-{2 Cor 12:7}. Note, “to keep me from exalting myself,” the temptation having seen these visions was to be arrogant, pride and the LORD intervened by gifting him a “thorn” to keep him from exalting not Christ but …self! Arrogance, pride exalts self! Humility exalts Christ!

Nebuchadnezzar had surveyed all of Babylon and boasted in what he had done, his pride, arrogance. He had a dream that troubled him. Daniel interpreted it for him, “this is the interpretation, O king: It is a decree of the Most High, which has come upon my lord the king,that you shall be driven from among men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. You shall be made to eat grass like an ox, and you shall be wet with the dew of heaven, and seven periods of time shall pass over you, till you know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will…All this came upon King Nebuchadnezzar.  At the end of twelve months he was walking on the roof of the royal palace of Babylon,  and the king answered and said, “Is not this great Babylon, which I have built by my mighty power as a royal residence and for the glory of my majesty?” While the words were still in the king’s mouth, there fell a voice from heaven, “O King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is spoken: The kingdom has departed from you, and you shall be driven from among men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. And you shall be made to eat grass like an ox, and seven periods of time shall pass over you, until you know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will…

Immediately the word was fulfilled against Nebuchadnezzar. He was driven from among men and ate grass like an ox, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven till his hair grew as long as eagles’ feathers, and his nails were like birds’ claws.

Nebuchadnezzar has a change of Mind and Humility

At the end of the days I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my reason returned to me, and I blessed the Most High, and praised and honored him who lives forever,

for his dominion is an everlasting dominion,
    and his kingdom endures from generation to generation;
35 all the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing,
    and he does according to his will among the host of heaven
    and among the inhabitants of the earth;
and none can stay his hand
    or say to him, “What have you done?”

36 At the same time my reason returned to me, and for the glory of my kingdom, my majesty and splendor returned to me. My counselors and my lords sought me, and I was established in my kingdom, and still more greatness was added to me.37 Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, for all his works are right and his ways are just; and those who walk in pride he is able to humble. -{Daniel 4:24-26, 28-33-40}

 Where Nebuchadnezzar was taken up with self importance, the LORD in his kindness intervened and then he saw clearly and now instead of exalting self he was exalting GOD! Self exaltation is an absence of humility. Humility holds God in the highest form and is occupied and declaring Him!

Humility is considerate and prefers others above self!

Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves;  do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.  Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus,”-{Phil 2:3-5}.

Humility looks out for the needs of others and seeks to meet them.

” We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.  But whoever has the world’s goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?  Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth. ” -{1 John 3:16-18}.


2. “Gentle”- {Prautes} “Meekness” and is “gentle strength” meekness” power under control” . Gentleness, Meekness comes forth from humility. Biblical meekness is not weakness but power under control.

3. “Be Patient.” {Makrothumia}- Patience, long-suffering.It embraces staying power, steadfastness. It literally means “long tempered.” You don’t have a short fuse, blow up. It is what God gifts us and id produced by the Holy Spirit. The Fruit of The Spirit-{Read Gal 5:22-234}.

Calvin said makrothumia refers to that quality of mind that disposes us “to take everything in good part and not to be easily offended.” Larry Richards – The NT contains many exhortations to be patient. But just what is patience? The Greek word group (makrothumeo/makrothumia) focuses our attention on restraint: that capacity for self-control despite circumstances that might arouse the passions or cause agitation....This is not so much a trait as a way of life. We keep on loving or forgiving despite provocation, as illustrated in Jesus’ pointed stories in Mt 18.” (Richards, L O: Expository Dictionary of Bible Words: Regency) ” Makrothumia is patience in face of injustice and unpleasant circumstances without complaint or irritation. The short-tempered person speaks and acts impulsively and lacks self-control. When a person is longsuffering, he can put up with provoking people or circumstances without retaliating.  “-{preceptaustin}

A.- Patience can endure negative circumstances.

It is used of Abraham in Hebrews 6;15, “And so, having patiently waited, he obtained the promise.” He did not let  negative circumstances defeat him. He expressed patience in his circumstances. Though he was over ninety and still no son as God had promised yet we read,”yet, with respect to the promise of God, he did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God,”-{Rom 4:20}. He had circumstances it seemed were against him, his age, his wife’s age and she was barren. but he kept on believing God he “grew strong in faith,” and giving Him glory. In the difficult circumstances h did live by what he saw but in Him who had promised, and he patiently endured… and God who promised fulfilled His promise to him!

B. – Patience endures difficult people.

“Makrothumia,” is also used of patience, long suffering with people. “We urge you, brethren, admonish the unruly, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with everyone.“-{1 Thess 5:14}. It is the attitude that refuses to return evil for evil, refuses to retaliate, hold grudges, be bitter, resentful  because it is not self focused but God focused. And so is by the Grace of God and the Power of the Holy Spirit living a life of patience, long suffering with difficult circumstances and difficult people.

Jeremiah the prophet was Given a  message and told the people would not accept it but he patiently endured in giving it, despite the negative, difficult circumstances and difficult people he encountered. He faced persecution, hatred, unbelief, rejection, opposition  and he hung in there he persevered, he was patient, suffered long and was faithful to the LORD. He was not indifferent for he is known as the weeping prophet, he cried a lot!

C.  Patience, long suffering {Makrothumia} is also used in the New Testament that accepts God’s dealings with them without questioning His plan for them.

And so we see the inner attitudes towards unity in a church, among believers be it one or two are… Humility – Gentleness {meekness},- Patience. and these are  three of  five INNER Attitudes which God wants us to adopt and practice, according to Eph 4:2-3}

Why? Because  its how love behaves,”Love is {being,} patient”-{1 Cor 13:7}


4. “FORBEARANCE”– the word means “to suppress with silence.” It’s the idea of throwing a blanket over sin. It’s covering sin. “Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. “- {1 Peter 4:8}. Note what does love cover” “a multitude of sins.” Some people want to be the “sin police,” every sin they want exposed and dealth with usually by them, often they are devoid of grace. At times when un-repented sin affects the purity of the church is time to confront it, but we see here love covers…”Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all transgressions.“-{Prov 10:12}. We see at the back of strife is hatred,and contrast that with how love behaves which  covers all transgressions.” Love keeps no record of wrongs.”-{1 Cor 13:5}. It doesn’t store up in its mind others sins and hold against them as a grudge or in bitterness, fuming beneath the surface in  resentment, animosity and bitterness poisoning others. Love recognizes sin and makes a choice to forgive, why? “Forgiving one another just as God in Christ has forgiven you.”-{Eph 4:32}.  The motivation is the great forgiveness God has extended to us, costing His Son His life to purchase it for us. It is said of the woman “she loved much because she was forgiven much.” Sometimes we fail to love little because we fail to realize  how much it cost Jesus Christ. Those who love much are those who realize how much they have been forgiven of by God.

The word used here is “Agape” the love that gives and gives and gives. It is not seeking to get or responding because there is mutual give and take, but this focus is to give and give. It  choose to give forgiveness and cover sins, failures of others. And remember for someone to love you they forgive your sins, and faults…. sometimes we are so “blinded” with self righteousness pointing our others faults, sins and failing to recognize our own. Indeed it is hypocrisy. Jesus said in Matthew 7 that there is a “log” in your won eye!

The love shown here is to think and seek the highest good of the other person.  It is the love of God in giving His Son at great cost to seek our highest good when we were what? HELPLESS.{v6}; UNGODLY,{v6}; SINNERS,-{v8}; ENEMIES,- {v10}; -{Read Romans 5:6-10}. He demonstrated His love to me to you the unlovely who were opposed to His rule in our life,yet He still came suffered, died, buried and arose again to rescue us from the penalty of sin, wrath of GOD, BONDAGE AND CONTROL OF SATAN! This is LOVE IN ACTION! Thinking and  Seeking the highest good for others.

Selfless not self seeking or holding back from doing all that is required for their highest good!

Jesus demonstrated this ultimately how? By laying down His life. This is the total sacrifice He gave, the sinless One giving Himself in place of the sinner to rescue them!

Forbearing love towards your enemies …

So this love is GIVING…