Jul 19, 2020. Ephesians 5:18-23

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FULL TANK CHRISTIANITY. Ephesians 5:18-21. 7/19/20. AM. #28.

Ephesians 5:18-21 [New King James Version]

18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, 19 speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, 20 giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, 21 submitting to one another in the fear of God.

  • The filling
    • Drunkenness is the perfect illustration of total control
      • Proverbs 23 makes clear that a person drunk is neither aware of what he does nor remembers what he did
      • Drunkenness controls via pleasure & addiction
    • Drunkenness occurs when an excess of alcohol is taken
      • Paul does not deal with the issue of abstinence  (1 Timothy 3 a command for elders, but not deacons)
      • Paul’s point is that excessive alcohol controls the mind, will, & body
      • What is pleasurable & soothing in moderation is destructive & deadly in excess (most people do not know when they cross the line to inebriation)
    • Instead of drunkenness, Paul commands control by Spirit
    • Commentators have taken 2 approaches to Spirit control
      • A man must control his own spirit (pnuematos)
      • A man must be controlled by the Holy Spirit
    • If man is to be filled by his own spirit, he is fleshly
    • Filling of the Holy Spirit is what Paul has in mind here
      • Filling = total control all the time (nothing else, including our own desires has control)
      • Filling must be moment by moment since our flesh fights for control (Romans 7)
    • Peter was filled by the Spirit when he declared Jesus to be the Son of God, but not filled when he rebuked the Lord
    • Filling the Spirit implies 4 things
      • A complete yielding to the Lord’s will (John 15:1-8)
      • A complete subjugation of my will (Matthew 26:39)
      • Seeking the Lord’s will in Word & via prayer
      • Doing the will of God (James 1:22-25; Luke 6:46-49)
  • A joy that cannot be contained
    • Those who are filled with the Spirit are joyous
      • John 15:11 Christ gives us a joy none can remove
      • Philippians 4:4-5 a joy & peace that is beyond reasoning
    • Even in grieve there is unsurpassed joy in the Lord
    • God gave us music & poetry to express our joy
      • We are to sing praises to & with each other
      • We are to sing & hum in our hearts
    • Categories of music: psalms, songs, & melodies (I Corinthians 14:7-8 our music must make sense that all may praise)
  • A thanksgiving that does not cease
    • Joy must be coupled with thanksgiving
      • Always be thankful (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
      • God blesses us beyond measure with grace, salvation, & promises, that we can still be thankful in pain & trials (Job 1)
    • An unthankful soul has an ungrateful heart
    • If we can’t thank God in trials, our gratitude in the midst of prosperity is fleshly & not genuine (1 Peter 4)
  • A harmony of the body that testifies of God’s grace
    • A church assembly filled with the Spirit submits to  one another (Philippians 2:3; James 2, Ephesians 4:32)
    • Galatians 5 a Spirit-filled assembly is not involved in pride, rivalries, fleshly disputes, strive, envy, or manipulation
    • A Spirit-filled assembly is known by love, peace, good works, kindness, charity, helpfulness, grace, & gentleness
    • If an assembly is full of strife, it is not filled with the Spirit
    • Matthew 18:15-18 strife within assembly is dealt with promptly
    • Filling of the Spirit brings joy, thanksgiving, & harmony

Key verse: John 15:1-8

1 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. 3 You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. 5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. 8 By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.