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20. Characteristics of a Spirit-filled Home

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Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:1-4)

What are characteristics of a Spirit-filled home, as seen in the relationship between parents and children?

In Ephesians 6:1-4, Paul gives instructions to children and parents. Since the word “fathers” in verse 4 can be translated as “parents,” in this study we will address both parents.

It must be remembered that this passage is connected to Ephesians 5:18, where Paul calls the Ephesians to be filled with the Spirit. To be “filled” means to be empowered and controlled by the Spirit of God. In Ephesians 5:19-22, he gives the results of the Spirit’s filling. Believers worship, give thanks, and submit to one another out of reverence to Christ. Paul then talks about the Spirit-filled relationship between a husband and wife, and then between children and parents.

In a Spirit-filled home, children obey their parents, and parents raise their children in the Lord and do not exasperate them. If this is true of a Spirit-filled home, then in a worldly home, children are disobedient and parents neglect training them in the Lord.

Romans 1 describes the results of society denying God, and one of them is disobedient children (v. 30). Furthermore, Isaiah describes how in a society under God’s judgment, children rule and oppress the people. Isaiah 3:12-13 says, “Youths oppress my people, women rule over them. O my people, your guides lead you astray; they turn you from the path. The LORD takes his place in court; he rises to judge the people.”

Sadly, this is happening all over the world. The Duke of Windsor once quipped, “The thing that impresses me most about America is the way parents obey their children.”1 Instead of children submitting to their parents, parents often do whatever it takes to make children happy, even to their demise. In many places, youth run wild and people are scared to walk the streets because of theft, murder, and gang violence. 

In many families there is oppression by either the parents or the children, instead of love and obedience to God’s Word. John MacArthur shares a quote from the Minnesota Crime Commission, which demonstrates the truthfulness of Scripture on this topic:

Every baby starts life as a little savage. He is completely selfish and self–centered. He wants what he wants when he wants it: his bottle, his mother’s attention, his playmate’s toys, his uncle’s watch, or whatever. Deny him these and he seethes with rage and aggressiveness which would be murderous were he not so helpless. He’s dirty, he has no morals, no knowledge, no developed skills. This means that all children, not just certain children but all children, are born delinquent. If permitted to continue in their self–centered world of infancy, given free reign to their impulsive actions to satisfy each want, every child would grow up a criminal, a thief, a killer, a rapist.2

Every child is infested with a sin nature, and if not trained, he or she will live a life of rebellion towards parents, God, and ultimately all authority. Children are a blessing, but they need godly instruction and ultimately the new birth.

Parents need Spirit empowerment to train their children, and children need Spirit empowerment to obey and honor their parents. In this study, we will consider characteristics of a Spirit-filled home.

Big Question: What characteristics of a Spirit-filled home can be discerned from Ephesians 6:1-4?

In a Spirit-filled Home, Children Obey and Honor Their Parents

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” (Ephesians 6:1-3)

Interpretation Question: Who is Paul referring to when he says “children”?

When Paul commands “children” to obey and honor their parents, he is not only referring to small children; tekna (children) is a general term referring to all offspring.3 Biblically, it denotes those who are unmarried and still financially dependent on their parents. Genesis 2:24 says this about the marriage relationship: “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.” God must still come first, but then the wife must be devoted to her husband and the husband to his wife. Obedience to parents is no longer the priority.

However, the responsibility to honor parents, which at times includes obedience, never changes. Obedience refers primarily to our actions and honor refers primarily to our attitude. We should always honor our parents, even if we are no longer under their supervision.

Sadly, aging parents are often not honored in our culture. They are seen as a burden instead of a blessing, and are often neglected. Conversely, Scripture teaches that sons and daughters owe parents and grandparents special honor when they age and cannot provide for themselves. First Timothy 5:4 and 8 says,

But if a widow has children or grandchildren, these should learn first of all to put their religion into practice by caring for their own family and so repaying their parents and grandparents, for this is pleasing to God… If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

Now this teaching would have been especially hard for children in the ancient culture of Ephesus to receive. Many held a deep animosity towards their father. The patriarch of the family held unlimited power and was typically excessively strict. He owned all the property, and even adult children could not own anything in their own name until he died. Even a forty-five-year-old senator could not own property if his father was still alive.4 This unlimited power commonly resulted in lording over the children and creating a deep animosity within them. Sometimes this anger even resulted in patricide, for which Romans reserved one of their worst punishments—being stripped, whipped, and drowned in a bag, along with live animals to scratch at the flesh.5

In Ephesians 6:1, Paul says, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord.” In this text, we can discern how they are to obey their parents. “The Greek word translated ‘obey’ is very helpful because it comes from two words, under and to listen — so that it literally means to listen under.”6 From this we can learn two qualities of the child’s obedience.

Observation Question: How are children to obey and honor their parents?

1. In order to obey their parents, children must listen to them.

The book of Proverbs is primarily about a father teaching his son wisdom. He constantly calls the child to listen and to hear. Proverbs 4:10 says, “Listen, my son, accept what I say, and the years of your life will be many.”

In the same way, children should listen to their parents. Parents are not perfect, but they have lived more years than their children. Even adult children should constantly seek the advice and wisdom of their parents, for it will bless their souls.

2. In order to obey their parents, children must submit to them.

To “listen under” has the connotation of submitting to authority and responding positively when spoken to. Often this is not the normal reaction of children. Instead of responding positively to parental instruction, children tend to respond negatively because they want their own way.

As long as children are under their parents’ authority, they must recognize that this authority is God-given. Romans 13:1 says there is no authority but that which comes from God.

A powerful story of submitting to parental authority comes from the life of Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones. While in college, Martyn Lloyd-Jones felt a call to pastoral ministry; however, his parents really wanted him to be a doctor. After praying about the matter, he felt that he should first become a doctor to honor his parents and then become a pastor in obedience to God. And he did. He became one of the top doctors in his field, and then left the medical field to go to seminary and became one of the most well-known pastors in history.

3. In order to obey their parents, children must be faithful to the Lord.

The command for children to obey their parents in the Lord has several implications.

  • First, it means children must submit to their parents as their duty to God; it is one of the ways they obey and honor God.
  • Second, children must cultivate their relationship with God (and be filled with the Spirit) in order to obey their parents.

We see children cultivating a deep relationship with God throughout the Scriptures. Samuel came to know God at a very young age. God spoke to him and he replied, “Speak, for your servant listens” (1 Sam 3:10b). Similarly, David, though marginalized by his parents for his age, had a deep relationship with God, and God used him at a young age. God enabled him to kill a lion and a bear, and one day God used him to defeat Israel’s enemy, Goliath. In order to faithfully obey, especially when things are difficult with parents, children must cultivate their relationship with God and be filled with the Spirit.

  • Finally, it describes the sphere of children’s obedience.

Children should obey their parents in everything except when their parents tell them to disobey God. If their parents tell them to lie, steal, or cheat, they should disobey because their allegiance is to God first.

Application Questions: What type of relationship did/do you have with your parents? As a child, were you generally obedient or disobedient, and why? How does this relationship affect you today?

In a Spirit-filled Home, Children Understand the Importance of Obeying and Honoring Their Parents

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” (Ephesians 6:1-3)

In a Spirit-filled home, children don’t just obey because they have to—they also understand why. When Paul says, “for this is right,” he begins to lay reasons for obedience and honor. This also is an important parenting practice. Often children ask the question, “Why?” after being told to do something by their parents. And often the response is, “Because I told you so.” There is a place for this, but if it’s the primary way parents respond to their children, it’s not healthy. Children need to understand why in order to learn to make wise decisions on their own.

Like a wise parent, Paul explains why children should obey and honor their parents.

Observation Question: What reasons does Paul give children for obeying and honoring their parents in Ephesians 6:1-3?

1. Children should obey and honor their parents because it is ethical.

The first reason Paul gives is simply because it is right. “Dikaios (right) refers to that which is correct, just, righteous—to that which is exactly as it should be.”7 This is the way God meant for families to function, and therefore it is righteous and pleasing to him.

If children want to please their heavenly Father, they must obey their parents. It doesn’t matter how mean, rude, or unspiritual the parents are. What matters is obeying and pleasing God.

2. Children should obey and honor their parents because it brings prosperity.

Next, Paul quotes the fifth commandment in Exodus 20:12. He says, “‘Honor your father and mother’—which is the first commandment with a promise— ‘that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.’”

In this commandment, God promised Israel that it would go well with a child who obeyed his parents. Even though we are not under Old Testament law (cf. Rom 6:14), the fact that Paul repeats this in the New Testament means that this promise is still true for us today.

God promises to bless the life of a child who obeys his parents. Certainly, we can see this happening around us: An obedient child develops healthy patterns and character traits like honesty, hard work, and generosity that often lead to a prosperous life. His integrity and diligence lead to blessing from teachers, employers, spouses, and ultimately God.

In contrast, a child that rebels against his parents will rebel against teachers, bosses, and ultimately every other authority, including God. This leads to pain. Commonly, rebellious children get caught up in hazardous practices like alcohol and drug abuse and dishonest dealings, which will affect them for the rest of their lives. They will constantly deal with the consequences of their sins and ultimately God’s discipline.

Interpretation Question: In what way is this “the first commandment with a promise, as Paul says?

Pastor Steve Cole’s comments are helpful here. He says,

But, Paul’s comment, that this is “the first commandment with a promise,” is a bit puzzling. Scholars point out that the second commandment, not to make any idols, promises that God will show lovingkindness to those who love Him and keep His commands (Exod. 20:4-6). But, as Calvin explains (The Institutes of the Christian Religion [Westminster Press], ed. by John McNeill, 2:8:37), that promise was not confined to that particular command, but extends to the whole law. So the promise attached to the fifth commandment was the first specific promise among the ten and the first of many promised blessings for obedience.8

3. Children should obey and honor their parents because it promotes a long life.

Now, when God promises a long life to Israel and the church for obedience to parents, this probably refers to a full life—however long God planned for a person to live. It must be remembered that God has an allotted amount of time for each believer on the earth. As David says in Psalm 139:16, “your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” God ordained all the days of David before he was born.

However, some experience untimely deaths because of their disobedience. This is seen with Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5:5-10), and certain members of the church at Corinth (1 Cor 11:30).9 Today lack of respect for authorities, substance abuse, and crime shorten lives, as the disobedience perpetuated in childhood continues into adulthood.

Obeying and honoring parents is so important that in the Old Covenant, God commanded that a child who struck or cursed his parents be put to death (Ex 21:15, 17; Lev 20:9). To physically or verbally abuse a parent was a capital offense because this type of behavior would not only dishonor the parents and God, but ultimately destroy society. A society where children rule is a society under God’s curse and is headed for destruction (cf. Is 3:11-12).

Application Questions: What are your thoughts about God’s promise of prosperity and long life to obedient children, and the lack of these blessings for the rebellious? How have you seen this promise play out in your life or the lives of others?

In a Spirit-filled Home, Parents Do Not Exasperate Their Children

Fathers, do not exasperate your children (Ephesians 6:4)

The next aspect of a Spirit-filled home is that parents do not exasperate their children—provoking them to anger and rebellion.

Pateres, the Greek word Paul uses here, typically referred to male parents but at times referred to parents in general. We see it used this way in Hebrews 11:23, when referring to Moses’ parents. Since Paul calls for children to obey both parents in the previous three verses, he is most likely still referring to both parents in this verse.10

With that said, the father was the most dominant figure in the home and the one most likely to exasperate the children, or provoke them to wrath. Certainly, mothers did this as well, but fathers were more inclined to it.

MacArthur shares why the father’s love would be hard to even imagine in this ancient context.

By the Roman law of patria potestas a father had virtual life and death power not only over his slaves but over his entire household. He could cast any of them out of the house, sell them as slaves, or even kill them—and be accountable to no one. A newborn child was placed at its father’s feet to determine its fate. If the father picked it up, the child was allowed to stay in the home; if the father walked away, it was simply disposed of—much as aborted babies are in our own day. Discarded infants who were healthy and vigorous were collected and taken each night to the town forum, where they would be picked up and raised to be slaves or prostitutes.11

As we consider this command, we must ask, “How do parents provoke their children to wrath?”

By understanding how this happens, parents can avoid it.

Interpretation Question: How do parents exasperate their children, or provoke them to wrath?

1. Parents exasperate their children by not disciplining them.

This is one of the quickest ways to develop bitter children. A spoiled child is a thankless and bitter child. Because they get their way all the time, they are bitter whenever any authority does not submit to them or when life becomes difficult. Solomon said, “Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him” (Prov. 22:15).

Parents embitter their children by never driving the foolishness—the sin—out of their hearts through good discipline. Parents who do not discipline their children but instead give them everything they want often become surprised when the children eventually rebel later in life. These spoiled kids want nothing to do with their parents. Sadly, this happens too much, even in the church.

2. Parents exasperate their children by abusing them, or applying improper discipline.

Verbal and physical abuse sow seeds of anger—and even hatred—into children’s hearts. Such anger is difficult to overcome, and often results in these children abusing others.

However, this happens not only as a result of abuse, but also because of improper discipline. Parents who do not manage their anger wisely train their children to react in the same manner. A parent who curses, criticizes, or even harshly disciplines a child—even if the punishment is just—teaches him that cursing, uncontrolled hitting, and “going crazy” are acceptable ways to express anger. This child does not learn how to manage his anger, and therefore struggles with it throughout his life. He grows up doing what he has been trained to do—fight others, and hold grudges against those he feels failed him.

Listen parents, telling your children to go to their rooms while you are angry can be a wise tactic. It gives you a chance to evaluate their sin, their motives, and your own heart. It allows you to teach them how to respond to anger, and it also allows you to discipline them appropriately.

3. Parents exasperate their children by neglecting them.

Many children lack love and affection because of parental neglect and therefore grow bitter. Some parents neglect their children for work; they put in long hours to achieve secular success, but this pursuit keeps them away from home. Ultimately, this hurts children both emotionally and spiritually.

Sadly, many parents in our society neglect their children by sending them away to extensive education programs often to compensate for their lack of being around. However, it is not God’s will for teachers, coaches, or babysitters to raise children. That is why he gave them parents. These people certainly play a role, but it is important for parents to be the primary influence on their children’s lives.

We see the tragic consequences of neglect in the account of David and his son Absalom. When one of David’s sons raped his half-sister, David did nothing. When Absalom killed the rapist, David did nothing. When Absalom ran away from the kingdom, David did nothing. When Absalom came back after murdering his brother, David refused to see him. This neglect created such anger in Absalom that he eventually usurped his father’s authority in the kingdom and essentially tried to kill him. David neither disciplined Absalom nor encouraged him to make right choices, with drastic and far-reaching consequences.

Many children have tremendous anger at a father or mother who neglected them. Parents, do not embitter your children. Prioritize them over your work, your church, your entertainment, and your social life. Let only God and your spouse come before them.

4. Parents exasperate their children by never encouraging them and showing them affection.

We see this in the story of Martin Luther, whose father never encouraged him or showed him love. Listen to what commentator William Barclay said:

It is one of the tragic facts of religious history that Martin Luther’s father was so stern to him that, all his life, Luther found it difficult to pray: ‘Our Father.’ The word father in his mind represented nothing but severity. The duty of the parent is discipline, but it is also encouragement. Luther himself said: ‘Spare the rod and spoil the child. It is true. But beside the rod keep an apple to give him when he does well.’12 

Healthy parents not only discipline their children, but also reward them. As they reward their children when they do well and discipline them when they do wrong, children learn fairness by this balanced approach.

5. Parents exasperate their children by showing favoritism toward other siblings.

We get a good picture of this in the story of Jacob and Joseph. Jacob gave Joseph a robe of many colors, showing his favor of this son above the other eleven. In anger, the embittered older siblings later kidnapped Joseph and sold him into slavery.

How often do siblings become embittered against one another because of unwise parenting practices? These children grow up disliking one another: “Mother always thought you were the prettiest.” “Dad always liked you because you were the smartest and most athletic.” This happens all too often.

6. Parents exasperate their children by neglecting or deriding their God-given bent or disposition.

Proverbs 22:6 says, “Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.” “In the way he should go” can also be translated as “his way,” or “his bent.” The Amplified Bible translates it this way: “Train up a child in the way he should go [and in keeping with his individual gift or bent], and when he is old he will not depart from it.” The word “way” comes from a Hebrew verb used of a bow launching an arrow.13 When a person shoots an arrow, the tension must align with the natural bend in the bow or it will break. This is also true in raising children.

Some parents damage their children by trying to train them in a way God didn’t wire them. They may do this by pushing their them into the medical field, athletics, or music, even though the children show no aptitude or passion in those areas. God gives us children who are already uploaded with a unique and specific program, like a computer. We can’t use software uniquely made for an Apple with a PC. It’s the same with children. Some will be wired towards the arts, technology, or serving ministries. It is the job of parents to get to know the way God wired their children so they can encourage them in those areas.

This can be difficult for parents, especially if their child’s wiring doesn’t fit their expectations or what might be considered successful in society. However, we are called to train a child according to “his way”—according to his own bent (Prov 22:6)—not ours or others’. His “way” may not appeal to us, but we are to raise our children to live for God and fulfill his calling on their lives.

7. Parents exasperate their children by pushing them to achieve beyond reasonable bounds.

Parents often exasperate their children by unrealistic academic, athletic, social, or career expectations. No matter how well the child does, it is never good enough. Eventually the child learns that nothing will ever please his parents—pushing him towards rebellion. Some parents do this because they are trying to live out their unfulfilled dreams through their children, or trying to meet society’s expectations instead of God’s. Many children are exasperated even to the point of suicide by these types of expectations.

Instead of their own expectations or those of the world, Spirit-filled parents seek God’s expectations for their children’s lives.

Application Questions: In what other ways do parents provoke their children to wrath? How can the church play a role in remedying unwise parenting?

In a Spirit-filled Home, Parents Lovingly Raise Their Children in the Lord

Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4)

Finally, Paul calls for parents to train their children in the Lord. Sadly, in many homes, only culture and secular wisdom are taught—often creating secular, worldly children. But in a Spirit-filled home, parents raise their children in the training and instruction of the Lord.

Interpretation Question: How should parents raise their children in the Lord?

1. Parents raise their children in the Lord by providing for their needs.

“The words ‘bring them up’ means ‘to nourish or feed,’ as in 5:29 which says that a man ‘feeds and cares’ for his own body. Calvin translates ‘bring them up’ with the words, ‘let them be kindly cherished.’”14

Spirit-filled parents should meet their children’s needs. This includes providing food and shelter, and also caring for them emotionally. To neglect them and not spend time with them is to damage them emotionally, physically, or spiritually. “Bring them up” has the sense of being kind and loving, as seen in Calvin’s translation, “let them be kindly cherished.” Parents must care for their children with kindness instead of treating them harshly.

2. Parents raise their children in the Lord by training them.

The word “training” can be translated discipline or chastening. It means “discipline, even by punishment.”15 Because children have a sin nature—a propensity to sin—they must be disciplined. Many Scriptures teach the necessity of discipline such as:

He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him. (Proverbs 13:24)

Discipline your son, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to his death. (Proverbs 19:18)

No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. (Hebrews 12:11)

Application Question: What are some principles for disciplining children correctly?

  • Discipline should never be administered in anger.

Scripture says that “man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires” (James 1:20). As mentioned earlier, when parents yell at their children or spank them in anger, they abuse them. This will not produce the righteous life that God desires in children. Parents should be calm and measured when disciplining their children.

  • Discipline should fit the sin.

In the Mosaic law, civil discipline had to fit the crime; it was to be “an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth” (Ex 21:24). This is also true in disciplining children. Parents must wisely consider the consequences for each infraction. If discipline is unfair, it may result in rebellion.

Parents must also discern the difference between childishness and foolishness. Small children are going to spill their milk; that is childishness. But when they spill the milk, are they doing it to be rebellious? Foolishness should be punished, but childishness should be corrected.

  • Discipline should be consistent.

When parents say, “If you do this, I will discipline you when we get home,” but then do nothing, children learn that their parents don’t always mean what they say. They then conclude that they don’t always have to obey. Also, it confuses children when they can turn on the TV when they should be sleeping on one occasion, but are disciplined for it on another occasion. Discipline must be consistent. In addition, the administration of discipline should be consistent between the parents. They must present a unified front; otherwise, it will encourage manipulation by the children and can cause discord in the marriage.

  • Discipline should create intimacy instead of distance.

When children disobey their parents, distance is created in the relationship. However, parental discipline shouldn’t create greater distance—it should restore intimacy. This is how God’s discipline functions with us. Sin separates us from God, but his discipline is meant to draw us back into intimacy with him. This is another reason why parents shouldn’t discipline unfairly or in anger; it further alienates children instead of drawing them closer.

How else should parents raise their children in the Lord?

3. Parents raise their children in the Lord by instructing them.

“Instruction” can also be translated as “admonition,” “correction,” or “advice.” It refers to verbal instruction or a verbal warning, with the literal meaning of “to place before the mind”16 or “putting in mind.”17 Again, this is what we see in Proverbs: a father instructing his son about life—warning him about the adulterous woman, the practice of sin and dishonesty, and encouraging him to fear the Lord and to find a godly wife. Parents should not only train their children through discipline but also through godly instruction.

The primary instructions that parents should give their children come from God’s Word. Consider what Moses taught the parents in Israel to do with their children in Deuteronomy 6:4-9:

Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.

MacArthur says this about the instructions to parents in Deuteronomy 6:

Parents were to continually speak about the things of God, so that knowledge and love of Him would become a matter of life and breath for the family. When the parents were not speaking the testimony would continue. “And you shall bind them as sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead” (v. 8). Even when the parents were gone, the testimony remained, because it was to be written “on the doorposts of your house and on your gates” (v. 9). In other words, there was always to be both verbal and visible commitment to the Word of God in the home. It is God’s plan for His Word to be passed on from one generation to the next. And His primary agent is the family.18

In a Spirit-filled home, the parents raise their children in the Lord by tenderly providing for them, disciplining them, and instructing them in the Lord.

Application Question: What are some other wise principles or practices for raising children in the Lord?


What are characteristics of a Spirit-filled home?

  1. In a Spirit-filled home, children obey and honor their parents.
  2. In a Spirit-filled home, children understand the importance of obeying and honoring their parents.
  3. In a Spirit-filled home, parents do not exasperate their children.
  4. In a Spirit-filled home, parents lovingly raise their children in the Lord.

Copyright © 2016 Gregory Brown

Unless otherwise noted, the primary Scriptures used are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version ®, Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by the International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked (ESV) are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®) Copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked (NASB) are from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked KJV or AKJV are from the King James Version or Authorized (King James) Version of the Bible.

All emphases in Scripture quotations and commentators’ quotations have been added.

1 Cole, Steven, “The Spirit-filled Home Part 1”, accessed 10/27/2015 from

2 MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1986). Ephesians (p. 309). Chicago: Moody Press.

3 MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1986). Ephesians (p. 311). Chicago: Moody Press.

4 Saller, Richard. “Family Values in Rome.” Accessed 10/17/2015 from

5 “Roman Punishment.” Accessed 10/17/2015 from

6 Hughes, R. K. (1990). Ephesians: the mystery of the body of Christ (p. 199). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

7 MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1986). Ephesians (p. 312). Chicago: Moody Press.

8 Accessed 10/17/ 2015 on

9 MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1986). Ephesians (p. 315). Chicago: Moody Press.

10 MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1986). Ephesians (p. 316). Chicago: Moody Press.

11 MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1986). Ephesians (pp. 315–316). Chicago: Moody Press.

12 W. Barclay, The New Daily Study Bible: The Letters to Philippians, Colossians, and Thessalonians, 3rd ed. (Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press, 2003), 190.

13 Keathley, J. III. The Principle of Nature (Knowing Your Child), accessed 2/8/15 .

14 Hughes, R. K. (1990). Ephesians: the mystery of the body of Christ (p. 200). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

15 Hughes, R. K. (1990). Ephesians: the mystery of the body of Christ (pp. 200–201). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

16 Hughes, R. K. (1990). Ephesians: the mystery of the body of Christ (p. 201). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

17 MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1986). Ephesians (p. 319). Chicago: Moody Press.

18 MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1986). Ephesians (p. 308). Chicago: Moody Press.

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