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Word Pictures in the New Testament
(Ephesians: Chapter 5)

5:1 {Imitators of God} (mimētai tou theou). This old word from mimeomai Paul boldly uses. If we are to be like God, we must imitate him.

5:2 {An offering and a sacrifice to God} (prosphoran kai thusian tōi theōi). Accusative in apposition with heauton (himself). Christ's death was an offering to God "in our behalf" (huper hēmōn) not an offering to the devil (Anselm), a ransom (lutron) as Christ himself said (Mt 20:28), Christ's own view of his atoning death.
{For an odour of a sweet smell} (eis osmēn euōdias). Same words in Php 4:18 from Le 4:31 (of the expiatory offering). Paul often presents Christ's death as a propitiation (Ro 3:25) as in 1Jo 2:2.

5:3 {Or covetousness} (ē pleonexia). In bad company surely. Debasing like sensuality.
{As becometh saints} (kathōs prepei hagiois). It is "unbecoming" for a saint to be sensual or covetous.

5:4 {Filthiness} (aischrotēs). Old word from aischros (base), here alone in N.T.
{Foolish talking} (mōrologia). Late word from mōrologos (mōros, logos), only here in N.T.
{Jesting} (eutrapelia). Old word from eutrapelos (eu, trepō, to turn) nimbleness of wit, quickness in making repartee (so in Plato and Plutarch), but in low sense as here ribaldry, scurrility, only here in N.T. All of these disapproved vices are hapax legomena in the N.T.
{Which are not befitting} (ha ouk anēken). Same idiom (imperfect with word of propriety about the present) in Col 3:18. Late MSS. read ta ouk anēkonta like ta mē kathēkonta in Ro 1:28.

5:5 {Ye know of a surety} (iste ginōskontes). The correct text has iste, not este. It is the same form for present indicative (second person plural) and imperative, probably indicative here, "ye know." But why ginōskontes added? Probably, "ye know recognizing by your own experience."
{No} (pās--ou). Common idiom in the N.T. like the Hebrew= "oudeis" (Robertson, "Grammar", p. 732).
{Covetous man} (pleonektēs, pleon echō). Old word, in N.T. only here and 1Co 5:10f.; 6:10. {Which is} (ho estin). So Aleph B. A D K L have hos (who), but ho is right. See Col 3:14 for this use of ho (which thing is). On eidōlolatrēs (idolater) see 1Co 5:10f.
{In the Kingdom of Christ and God} (en tēi basileiāi tou Christou kai theou). Certainly the same kingdom and Paul may here mean to affirm the deity of Christ by the use of the one article with Christou kai theou. But Sharp's rule cannot be insisted on here because theos is often definite without the article like a proper name. Paul did teach the deity of Christ and may do it here.

5:6 {With empty words} (kenois logois). Instrumental case. Probably Paul has in mind the same Gnostic praters as in Col 2:4f. See 2:2.

5:7 {Partakers with them} (sunmetochoi autōn). Late double compound, only here in N.T., joint (sun) shares with (metochoi) them (autōn). These Gnostics.

5:8 {But now light} (nun de phōs). Jesus called his disciples the light of the world (Mt 5:14).

5:9 {The fruit of light} (ho karpos tou phōtos). Two metaphors (fruit, light) combined. See Ga 5:22 for "the fruit of the Spirit." The late MSS. have "spirit" here in place of "light." {Goodness} (agathosunēi). Late and rare word from agathos. See 2Th 1:11; Ga 5:22.

5:10 {Proving} (dokimazontes). Testing and so proving.

5:11 {Have no fellowship with} (mē sunkoinōneite). No partnership with, present imperative with . Followed by associative instrumental case ergois (works).
{Unfruitful} (akarpois). Same metaphor of verse 9 applied to darkness (skotos).
{Reprove} (elegchete). Convict by turning the light on the darkness.

5:12 {In secret} (kruphēi). Old adverb, only here in N.T. Sin loves the dark.
{Even to speak of} (kai legein). And yet one must sometimes speak out, turn on the light, even if to do so is disgraceful (aischron, like 1Co 11:6).

5:13 {Are made manifest by the light} (hupo tou phōtos phaneroutai). Turn on the light. Often the preacher is the only man brave enough to turn the light on the private sins of men and women or even those of a community.

5:14 {Wherefore he saith} (dio legei). Apparently a free adaptation of Isa 26:19; 60:1. The form anasta for anastēthi (second person singular imperative second aorist active of anistēmi) occurs in Ac 12:7.
{Shall shine} (epiphausei). Future active of epiphauskō, a form occurring in Job (Job 25:5; 31:26), a variation of epiphōskō. The last line suggests the possibility that we have here the fragment of an early Christian hymn like 1Ti 3:16.

5:15 {Carefully} (akribōs). Aleph B 17 put akribōs before pōs (how) instead of pōs akribōs (how exactly ye walk) as the Textus Receptus has it. On akribōs (from akribēs) see Mt 2:8; Lu 1:3.
{Unwise} (asophoi). Old adjective, only here in N.T.

5:16 {Redeeming the time} (exagorazomenoi ton kairon). As in Col 4:5 which see.

5:17 {Be ye not foolish} (mē ginesthe aphrones). "Stop becoming foolish."

5:18 {Be not drunken with wine} (mē methuskesthe oinōi). Present passive imperative of methuskō, old verb to intoxicate. Forbidden as a habit and to stop it also if guilty. Instrumental case oinōi.
{Riot} (asōtia). Old word from asōtos (adverb asōtōs in Lu 15:13), in N.T. only here, Tit 1:6; 1Pe 4:4. {But be filled with the Spirit} (alla plērousthe en pneumati). In contrast to a state of intoxication with wine.

5:19 {To the Lord} (tōi Kuriōi). The Lord Jesus. In Col 3:16 we have tōi theōi (to God) with all these varieties of praise, another proof of the deity of Christ. See Col 3:16 for discussion.

5:20 {In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ} (en onomati tou Kuriou hēmōn Iēsou Christou). Jesus had told the disciples to use his name in prayer (Joh 16:23f.).
{To God, even the Father} (tōi theōi kai patri). Rather, "the God and Father."

5:21 {Subjecting yourselves to one another} (hupotassomenoi allēlois). Present middle participle of hupotassō, old military figure to line up under (Col 3:18). The construction here is rather loose, coordinate with the preceding participles of praise and prayer. It is possible to start a new paragraph here and regard hupotassomenoi as an independent participle like an imperative.

5:22 {Be in subjection}. Not in the Greek text of B and Jerome knew of no MS. with it. K L and most MSS. have hupotassesthe like Col 3:18, while Aleph A P have hupotassesthōsan (let them be subject to). But the case of andrasin (dative) shows that the verb is understood from verse 21 if not written originally. Idiois (own) is genuine here, though not in Col 3:18.
{As unto the Lord} (hōs tōi Kuriōi). So here instead of hōs anēken en Kuriōi of Col 3:18.

5:23 {For the husband is the head of the wife} (hoti anēr estin kephalē tēs gunaikos). "For a husband is head of the (his) wife." No article with anēr or kephalē.
{As Christ also is the head of the church} (hōs kai ho Christos kephalē tēs ekklēsias). No article with kephalē, "as also Christ is head of the church." This is the comparison, but with a tremendous difference which Paul hastens to add either in an appositional clause or as a separate sentence.
{Himself the saviour of the body} (autos sōtēr tou sōmatos). He means the church as the body of which Christ is head and Saviour.

5:24 {But} (alla). Perhaps, "nevertheless," in spite of the difference just noted. Once again the verb hupotassō has to be supplied in the principal clause before tois andrasin either as indicative (hupotassontai) or as imperative (hupotassesthōsan).

5:25 {Even as Christ also loved the church} (kathōs kai ho Christos ēgapēsen tēn ekklēsian). This is the wonderful new point not in Col 3:19 that lifts this discussion of the husband's love for his wife to the highest plane.

5:26 {That he might sanctify it} (hina autēn hagiasēi). Purpose clause with hina and the first aorist active subjunctive of hagiazō. Jesus stated this as his longing and his prayer (Joh 17:17-19). This was the purpose of Christ's death (verse 25). {Having cleansed it} (katharisas). First aorist active participle of katharizō, to cleanse, either simultaneous action or antecedent.
{By the washing of water} (tōi loutrōi tou hudatos). If loutron only means bath or bathing-place ( = loutron), then loutrōi is in the locative. If it can mean bathing or washing, it is in the instrumental case. The usual meaning from Homer to the papyri is the bath or bathing-place, though some examples seem to mean bathing or washing. Salmond doubts if there are any clear instances. The only other N.T. example of loutron is in Tit 3:5. The reference here seems to be to the baptismal bath (immersion) of water, "in the bath of water." See 1Co 6:11 for the bringing together of apelousasthe and hēgiasthēte. Neither there nor here does Paul mean that the cleansing or sanctification took place in the bath save in a symbolic fashion as in Ro 6:4-6. Some think that Paul has also a reference to the bath of the bride before marriage. Still more difficult is the phrase "with the word" (en rēmati). In Joh 17:17 Jesus connected "truth" with "sanctify." That is possible here, though it may also be connected with katharisas (having cleansed). Some take it to mean the baptismal formula.

5:27 {That he might present} (hina parastēsēi). Final clause with hina and first aorist active subjunctive of paristēmi (see Col 1:22 for parallel) as in 2Co 11:2 of presenting the bride to the bridegroom. Note both autos (himself) and heautōi (to himself).
{Glorious} (endoxon). Used of splendid clothing in Lu 7:25.
{Spot} (spilos). Late word, in N.T. only here and 2Pe 2:13, but spiloō, to defile in Jas 3:6; Jude 1:23.
{Wrinkle} (rutida). Old word from ruō, to contract, only here in N.T.
{But that it should be holy and without blemish} (all' hina ēi hagia kai amōmos). Christ's goal for the church, his bride and his body, both negative purity and positive.

5:28 {Even so ought} (houtōs opheilousin). As Christ loves the church (his body). And yet some people actually say that Paul in 1Co 7 gives a degrading view of marriage. How can one say that after reading Eph 5:22-33 where the noblest picture of marriage ever drawn is given?

5:29 {Nourisheth} (ektrephei). Old compound with perfective sense of ek (to nourish up to maturity and on). In N.T. only here and 6:4.
{Cherisheth} (thalpei). Late and rare word, once in a marriage contract in a papyrus. In N.T. only here and 1Th 2:7. Primarily it means to warm (Latin "foveo"), then to foster with tender care as here.
{Even as Christ also} (kathōs kai ho Christos). Relative (correlative) adverb pointing back to houtōs at the beginning of the sentence (verse 28) and repeating the statement in verse 25.

5:30 {Of his flesh and of his bones} (ek tēs sarkos autou kai ek tōn osteōn autou). These words are in the Textus Receptus (Authorized Version) supported by D G L P cursives Syriac, etc., though wanting in Aleph A B 17 Bohairic. Certainly not genuine.

5:31 {For this cause} (anti toutou). "Answering to this" = heneken toutou of Ge 2:24, in the sense of anti seen in anth' hōn (Lu 12:3). This whole verse is a practical quotation and application of the language to Paul's argument here. In Mt 19:5 Jesus quotes Ge 2:24. It seems absurd to make Paul mean Christ here by anthrōpos (man) as some commentators do.

5:32 {This mystery is great} (to mustērion touto mega estin). For the word "mystery" see 1:9. Clearly Paul means to say that the comparison of marriage to the union of Christ and the church is the mystery. He makes that plain by the next words.
{But I speak} (egō de legō). "Now I mean." Cf. 1Co 7:29; 15:50.
{In regard of Christ and of the church} (eis Christon kai [eis] tēn ekklēsian). "With reference to Christ and the church." That is all that eis here means.

5:33 {Nevertheless} (plēn). "Howbeit," not to dwell unduly (Abbott) on the matter of Christ and the church.
{Do ye also severally love} (kai humeis hoi kath' hena hekastos agapātō). An unusual idiom. The verb agapātō (present active imperative) agrees with hekastos and so is third singular instead of agapāte (second plural) like humeis. The use of hoi kath' hena after humeis = " ye one by one " and then hekastos takes up (individualizes) the "one" in partitive apposition and in the third person.
{Let the wife see that she fear} (hē gunē hina phobētai). There is no verb in the Greek for "let see" (blepetō). For this use of hina with the subjunctive as a practical imperative without a principal verb (an elliptical imperative) see Mr 5:23; Mt 20:32; 1Co 7:29; 2Co 8:7; Eph 4:29; 5:33 (Robertson, "Grammar", p. 994). "Fear" (phobētai, present middle subjunctive) here is "reverence."

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Word Pictures in the New Testament
(Ephesians: Chapter 5)

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