God our Father wants us to grow into His mature sons and daughters, “in every way more and more like Christ.” Jesus is, to be sure, the firstborn, the only begotten son, the Head. And, within the body of Christ, each member has a perfect place to fit, a perfect role to fulfill.
God has a glorious vision for His Body, for His children, and has made every provision to bring it to pass. He has given gifts to various members in His church, gifts which they are to employ in the building up of the body, until we all measure up to the complete standard of Christ.
Paul writes to the Ephesian believers that Christ, having risen from the lowest parts of this world to His place above all the heavens, has given gifts to His church– apostles and prophets, evangelists and pastors and teachers. “Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do His work, and build up the church, the body of Christ.” Ephesians 4:12 NLT.
In his letter to the Christians in Ephesus, Paul encourages us to keep united in the Holy Spirit, bound together with peace, and he lists seven unities of Christians– one body, one Spirit, one hope, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, Who is living through all. This is complete unity, the likes of which can be found nowhere else on earth. But it is not uniformity, as Paul’s next statement will show.
“Make every effort,” Paul writes to the Ephesian Christians, “to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all, in all, and living through all.” Ephesians 4:3-6 NLT
With all that Christ has done for us, with all that His promises to us, Paul writes to the Ephesian Christians begging them to live worthy of the calling of Christ. “Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults, because of your love.” Ephesians 4:2 NLT
As Paul continues his letter to the church in Ephesus, he reflects on the mercies of God and Christ Jesus, both to himself personally and to the non-Jewish world, to whom Paul had been given the opportunity and responsibility of bringing the Good News that Christ had made it possible for us to come to God.