Useful Bible Studies > Ephesians Commentary > chapter 6

An ambassador in chains

Ephesians 6:20

The phrase ‘an ambassador in chains’ impresses us. It seems to tell the story of a noble and honourable man, who has found himself in sad circumstances.

Today, an ambassador is an important official who works on behalf of his own nation in a foreign country. In the Bible, the word describes a man whose task was to carry an important message. People chose an older man for this task when the message was especially important. It was the custom at that time to deal with an old man with great honour. Perhaps then the person who received the message would show a good reaction to it. However, that did not always happen. A shocking example is 2 Samuel 10:1-5.

Paul’s work, too, was to bring an important message. That message is the gospel, the good news about Christ. Because of Christ’s death, God can forgive people’s evil deeds and he can give them a right relationship with himself. So, Paul appealed to people to turn from their evil deeds and to put their trust in Christ.

However, many people refused to accept Paul’s message. In fact, they hated him because of that message. So, he suffered much (2 Corinthians 11:23-27). Now, in Rome, he was again a prisoner, and a chain joined him constantly to his guard.

Many people would become bitter and angry in that situation, however, Paul did not. Instead, he was so grateful to God for his goodness that he continued to declare God’s message, the gospel. He even asked the Christians to pray that he would be able to declare it boldly.

Next part: About Tychicus, who took Paul's letter to Ephesus (Ephesians 6:21-22)


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© 2019, Keith Simons.