Useful Bible Studies > Ephesians Commentary > chapter 4

One Lord, one faith, one baptism

Ephesians 4:5

Paul is writing about those things that all Christians have in common. He says that they all share one Lord, one faith, and one baptism.

The word ‘Lord’ means a master (6:9); but it is also the translation of God’s most holy name into the Greek language (for example, compare Joel 2:32 and Romans 10:13). In Paul’s letters, the word ‘Lord’ particularly refers to Christ (Romans 10:9; 2 Corinthians 13:14). So, all true Christians accept Christ as their master and they obey him gladly. They recognise that he alone is God.

‘Faith’ means belief and trust in God. Of course, Christians from different churches often disagree about some of their beliefs. We may ask, therefore, how there can only be one true faith. The answer, perhaps, is that all true Christians do agree about who to believe. They all know that they must believe God; they put their trust in him. So, we accept the true faith when we believe and trust God.

In the same way, there are many different beliefs and traditions about baptism. Baptism is the ceremony with water, for a person who joins the Christian church. To recognise what Paul means by the one true baptism, we must understand the meaning of the ceremony. Romans 6:3-4 shows that the real meaning of baptism is about Christ’s death. To become a Christian, each person must recognise that Christ died for him (Romans 5:6). At the death of Christ, Christ took upon himself the punishment that the person deserves. Christ did it so that God can forgive that person’s sins (wrong and evil deeds). As water washes a person clean, so God removes that person’s sins (Psalm 51:2 and 51:7; Isaiah 1:18). So, the person begins a new life with Christ, which will never end (John 3:3-16 and 11:25-26; 2 Corinthians 5:17).

Next part: One God and Father (Ephesians 4:6)


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© 2019, Keith Simons.