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Introduction

\\INTRODUCTION TO EPHESIANS 5\\

The apostle, in this chapter, goes on with his exhortations to the
duties of religion; and such in general as relate to purity of life,
and against uncleanness; and particularly treats of the duties of
married persons. And whereas in the latter part of the preceding
chapter, he had exhorted to kindness and tenderness, and which he
enforced by the example of God himself, he here repeats and urges it;
and to it adds the example of Christ in loving his people, and giving
himself for them a propitiatory sacrifice, acceptable to God,
\\#Eph 5:1,2\\, then follows a dehortation from several vices of the
impure kind, some as being filthy actions, and unbecoming saints, and
not to be named by them, and much less done, \\#Eph 5:3\\, others, and
such as are vices of the tongue, as being inconvenient, and to which
thanksgiving is preferred, \\#Eph 5:4\\, and the former especially, as
excluding from having any part or portion in the kingdom of God and
Christ \\#Eph 5:5\\, and all of them, as bringing the wrath of God
upon men, \\#Eph 5:6\\, wherefore professors of religion should avoid
such sins, and not join with the children of disobedience in the
commission of them, \\#Eph 5:7\\, to which exhortation they should the
rather give heed, from the consideration of their present state,
illustrated by their former one; who were once darkness, but now
light, and therefore should walk as enlightened persons, \\#Eph 5:8\\,
and as having the Spirit of God, which is known by its fruits,
\\#Eph 5:9\\, studying to know, approve of, and do that which is
acceptable to God, \\#Eph 5:10\\, and on the contrary, should have no
society and communion with men in the commission of sins, the works of
darkness, but should reprove them for them, \\#Eph 5:11\\, since the
things done by them were such, that it was a shame to relate them, and
much more to commit them, \\#Eph 5:12\\, and the rather this was
incumbent upon them, since it was agreeably to their character, as
being made light in the Lord; seeing it is the property of light to
make manifest and detect what is done in the dark, \\#Eph 5:13\\,
which is confirmed by a passage of Scripture pertinently produced, to
stir up drowsy and lifeless professors to the discharge of their duty,
\\#Eph 5:14\\, and from hence the apostle enforces a wise and
circumspect walk and conversation, one part of which lies in redeeming
time; and which should be done for this reason, because the present
days were evil ones, \\#Eph 5:15,16\\, and that they might avoid a
foolish walk, and order their conversation wisely and aright, he
suggests it would be proper to learn what was the will of the Lord,
which is the rule of a Christian's walk and conversation, \\#Eph 5:17\\,
and whereas drunkenness is oftentimes the cause of all the above
mentioned vices, the apostle cautions against that, and on the
contrary advises them to be concerned for a larger measure of the
Spirit of God; that under his influence they might sing psalms, hymns,
and spiritual songs, in a melodious manner, and heartily to the Lord;
and so express their thankfulness to him, for all mercies from him;
and not abuse their mercies and themselves, spend their time in
singing lewd and profane songs, as drunkards often do, \\#Eph 5:18-20\\,
and hence he passes to the special duties of wives and husbands, to
which he premises a general exhortation to submission to one another,
\\#Eph 5:21\\, and begins with the subjection of wives to their
husbands, this being the will of the Lord, \\#Eph 5:22\\, and besides,
the relation which the wife stands in to her husband, being her head,
requires it; and which is illustrated by Christ being the head and
Saviour of his body, the church, \\#Eph 5:23\\, and which is further
urged and enforced by the instance and example of the church's
subjection to Christ, \\#Eph 5:24\\, and next the apostle exhorts
husbands to love their wives, in imitation of Christ, who has loved
his church; and as an instance of it, has given himself to death for
her; than which, there cannot be a greater instance of love,
\\#Eph 5:25\\, the ends of which were, the sanctification and
cleansing of the church with his blood, by means of water and the
word; and the presentation of her to himself, all glorious and
beautiful, \\#Eph 5:26,27\\, and then another argument is used, to
engage the affections of husbands to their wives, they being their own
bodies; so that loving them, is loving themselves, \\#Eph 5:28\\, nor
was it ever known, and it would be unnatural, for a man to hate his
own flesh, but on the contrary, he nourishes and cherishes it; and
therefore seeing the wife is a man's own flesh, he ought not to hate
her, but to nourish and cherish her; and this is also enforced by the
example of Christ, who does not hate his church, but nourishes and
cherishes her, \\#Eph 5:29\\, the reason of which is, because the
saints which make up the church are members of him, one flesh and
blood with him, \\#Eph 5:30\\, which is the case of a man and his
wife; and hence it is, that according to the original law of marriage,
a man was to leave father and mother, and cleave to his wife,
\\#Eph 5:31\\, the whole of which is a mystery, and typical of the
marriage relation and union between Christ and his church, \\#Eph 5:32\\,
and the chapter is closed with a recapitulation of the mutual duties
of husband and wife, love in the one, and reverence in the other,
\\#Eph 5:33\\.