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1As the Lord's prisoner, then, I beg you to live lives worthy of your high calling.

2Accept life with humility and patience, generously making allowances for each other because you love each other.

3Make it your aim to be at one in the Spirit, and you will be bound together in peace.

4There is one Body and one Spirit, just as it was to one hope that you were called.

5There is one Lord, one, faith, one baptism,

6one God and Father of all, who is the one over all, the one working through all and the one living in all.

7To each one of us is given his measure of grace from the richness of Christ's gift.

8Thus the scripture says: When he ascended on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.

9Note the implication hereto say that Christ "ascended" means that he must previously have "descended", that is to the depth of this world.

10The one who made this descent is the same person as he who has now ascended high above the very Heavensthat he might fill the whole universe.

11His "gifts unto men" were varied. Some he made his messengers, some prophets, some preachers of the gospel; to some he gave the power to guide and teach his people.

12His gifts were made that Christians might be properly equipped for their service, that the whole body might be built up

13until the time comes when, in the unity of common faith and common knowledge of the Son of God, we arrive at real maturitythat measure of development which is meant by "the fullness of Christ".

14We are not meant to remain as children at the mercy of every chance wind of teaching, and of the jockeying of men who are expert in the crafty presentation of lies.

15But we are meant to speak the truth in love, and to grow up in every way into Christ, the head.

16For it is from the head that the whole body, as a harmonious structure knit together by the joints with which it is provided, grows by the proper functioning of individual parts, and so builds itself up in love.

17This is my instruction, then, which I give you in the Lord's name. Do not live any longer the futile lives of gentiles.

18For they live in a world of shadows, and are cut off from the life of God through their deliberate ignorance of mind and sheer hardness of heart.

19They have lost all decent feelings and abandoned themselves to sensuality, practicing any form of impurity which lust can suggest.

20But you have learned nothing like that from Christ,

21if you have really heard his voice and understood the truth that Jesus has taught you.

22No, what you learned was to fling off the ditty clothes of the old way of living, which were rotted through and through with lust's illusions,

23and, with yourselves mentally and spiritually remade,

24to put on the clean fresh clothes of the new life which was made by God's design for righteousness and the holiness which is no illusion.

25Finish, then, with lying and let each man tell his neighbour the truth, for we are all parts of the same body.

26If you are angry, be sure that it is not a sinful anger. Never go to bed angry

27don't give the devil that sort of foothold.

28The man who used to be a thief must give up stealing, and do an honest day's work with his own hands, so that he may be able to give to those in need.

29Let there be no more foul language, but good words insteadwords suitable for the occasion, which God can use to help other people.

30Never wound the Holy Spirit. He is, remember, the seal upon you of your eventual full redemption.

31Let there be no more bitter resentment or anger, no more shouting or slander, and let there be no bad feeling of any kind among you.

32Be kind to each other, be compassionate. Be as ready to forgive others as God for Christ's sake has forgiven you.


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