Paul's Letter to the Ephesians

Chapter 5

After general exhortations to love, 1, 2; to flee fornication, 3; and all uncleanness, 4-6; not to converse with the wicked, 7-14; to walk carefully, 15-17; and to be filled with the Spirit, 18-21; Paul descends to the particular duties, how wives ought to obey their husbands, 22-24; and husbands ought to love their wives, 25-31, even as Christ does his church, 32, 33.

1 Be therefore followers of God, as dear children, 2 And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and has given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savor.

3 But lewdness and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as is proper for saints, 4 Neither filthiness, foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not appropriate, but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this you know, that no lewd person, unclean person, or covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.

6 Let no man deceive you with vain words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the children of disobedience. 7 Therefore, do not be partakers with them. 8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), 10 Proving what is acceptable to the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. 12 For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret. 13 But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light, for whatever is made manifest is light. 14 Therefore, he says,

"Awake, you who sleep, and arise from the dead,/
and Christ will give you light."

15 See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, 16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore, do not be unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. 18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is excess, but be filled with the Spirit, 19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, 20 Giving thanks always for all things to God and the Father, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, 21 Submitting yourselves to one another in the fear of God.

22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church, and he is the Savior of the body. 24 Therefore, as the church is subject to Christ, so let wives be to their own husbands in everything.

25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church and gave himself for it, 26 So that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 And that he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle, or any such thing, but that it should be holy and without blemish. 28 Likewise, men also ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife, loves himself. 29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, even as the Lord the church. 30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. 31 "For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother and shall be joined to his wife, and the two of them shall be one flesh." 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless, let each of you in particular thus love his wife even as himself, and the wife see that she reverences her husband.


Matthew Henry Commentary - Ephesians, Chapter 5[➚]


[v.5] - Reference, 1st Corinthians 6:9-10; Revelation 21:8.

[v.13] - "for whatever is made manifest is light" - From the Pulpit Commentary: "The rendering of A.V., giving to φανερούμενον an active meaning ('whatsoever doth make manifest is light'), is rejected by most grammarians, as not being consistent with the usage of the word." From Vincent's Word Studies: "The A.V. renders 'doth make manifest,' as in the middle voice, but the verb is in the passive voice. It occurs nearly fifty times in the New Testament, and never as middle. Hence Rev., correctly, 'everything that is made manifest.'"

[v.14] - Reference, Isaiah 60:1. This passage seems to be referencing a quote by the prophet Isaiah rather than a direct quotation. Paul simply identified Christ as the "light" to which Isaiah refers.

[v.18] - "excess" - That is, debauchery.

[v.22-33] - Reference, 1st Peter 3:1-7.

[v.23a] - "For the husband is the head of the wife" - From John Calvin's Sermons on Job: "For whereas God has honored men in giving them the dignity of being the head of mankind, and appointed the woman to be inferior in degree, men must not be proud of it."

[v.23b] - Reference, Genesis 3:16; 1st Corinthians 11:3.

[v.30] - Reference, Romans 12:5; 1st Corinthians 6:15, 12:27. All of 1st Corinthians, ch. 12 expounds the body of Christ.

[v.31] - Quoting Genesis 2:24 (LXX).