Verse of the Day Devotion: Ephesians 4:25
“Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.” – Ephesians 4:25
In this section of Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, Paul is laying out how we are to live out this new life in Christ. In the first verse in this chapter he writes, “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:1-3. Paul is saying that because God has provided such an incredible and abundant salvation, we should walk according to our calling as children of God. And to walk this way in all humility, gentleness, and patience: desiring to maintain unity in the body of Christ and not bring dissension and disunity.
He then tells them that because they are Christians and have this new life, they should live as such. “Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds.” Ephesians 4:17. These Christians are gentile converts. They should no longer walk as they did formerly. He then described this former life. “They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity.” Ephesians 4:18-19. They are to walk away from this life “and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.” Ephesians 4:24. From verse 25 to the end of chapter 4, we see a list of attributes associated with this new life. We will look at each of these, one a day, to examine what this life is. And the first is today’s focus verse, “Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.” Ephesians 4:25.
We must eliminate all deceit from our conversations. Lying is understood as the universal vice of the pagan world. And because the Ephesians had recently been converted, this no doubt was a new concept for them. It was important that they understood and accepted that lying is evil in order to enable change to happen. Paul knew this and made it the first attribute in his list of this new life. We must be completely honest with everyone, and if a difficult truth is necessary, be compassionate and loving as you present it. Truth should always be the way we interact with others.
The Lord spoke to Zechariah the Prophet regarding deceit and that they should not practice it at any time. “These are the things that you shall do: Speak the truth to one another; render in your gates judgments that are true and make for peace; do not devise evil in your hearts against one another, and love no false oath, for all these things I hate, declares the LORD.” Zechariah 8:16-17. God hates deceit, and we should understand this and act accordingly. We should not think telling a “little white lie” is acceptable in any way. If you break a glass, say so. If you lost something someone loaned you, admit it. We should be honest regarding the value of something we sell, or any defects inherent in it. And finally, we should never encourage anyone to be deceptive on our behalf. Truth is truth, and anything other than truth is a falsehood. Let us choose to be honest at all times, no matter the consequences it may bring us. “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” If we want to be like Christ, than truth must become our way of life.
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.