Useful Bible Studies > Ephesians Commentary > chapter 5
It is not only sports-people who look after their bodies. We all look after our own bodies constantly. When our bodies are cold, we warm ourselves. When we are hungry, we get food. When we are tired, we sleep. In danger, we carry out the most extraordinary acts to defend and protect our bodies.
Paul says that people ‘nourish and cherish’ their own bodies. To nourish means to look after someone, as a parent looks after a child. The same word appears in Ephesians 6:4. To cherish means to show kindness; that word appears again in 1 Thessalonians 2:7.
Christ cares for his people, all true Christians, as if they are part of his own body. He gives them strength in their weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9-10). He provides for them (Matthew 6:25-33). He satisfies them completely (John 6:51-58). Nothing can ever separate them from his love for them (Romans 8:35-39).
For the same reason, a man should love his wife. God has joined the two of them together by their marriage (5:31). It is not God’s purpose that they should use their relationship to take advantage of each other. God does not want them to use each other in a cruel and selfish manner. God wants a husband to care for his wife. Their love has brought them into a special relationship with each other. So they are not really separate from each other. Therefore, they should look after each other, even as they look after their own bodies.
Next part: A husband and wife, and their decision to love each other (Ephesians 5:31)
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© 2019, Keith Simons.