Ephesians 5:16
Parallel Verses
New International Version
making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.

New Living Translation
Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days.

English Standard Version
making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.

New American Standard Bible
making the most of your time, because the days are evil.

King James Bible
Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
making the most of the time, because the days are evil.

International Standard Version
making the best use of your time because the times are evil.

NET Bible
taking advantage of every opportunity, because the days are evil.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Who redeem their opportunities because the days are evil.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Make the most of your opportunities because these are evil days.

Jubilee Bible 2000
redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

King James 2000 Bible
Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

American King James Version
Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

American Standard Version
redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Douay-Rheims Bible
But as wise: redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Darby Bible Translation
redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

English Revised Version
redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Webster's Bible Translation
Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Weymouth New Testament
Buy up your opportunities, for these are evil times.

World English Bible
redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Young's Literal Translation
redeeming the time, because the days are evil;
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

5:15-21 Another remedy against sin, is care, or caution, it being impossible else to maintain purity of heart and life. Time is a talent given us by God, and it is misspent and lost when not employed according to his design. If we have lost our time heretofore, we must double our diligence for the future. Of that time which thousands on a dying bed would gladly redeem at the price of the whole world, how little do men think, and to what trifles they daily sacrifice it! People are very apt to complain of bad times; it were well if that stirred them more to redeem time. Be not unwise. Ignorance of our duty, and neglect of our souls, show the greatest folly. Drunkenness is a sin that never goes alone, but carries men into other evils; it is a sin very provoking to God. The drunkard holds out to his family and to the world the sad spectacle of a sinner hardened beyond what is common, and hastening to perdition. When afflicted or weary, let us not seek to raise our spirits by strong drink, which is hateful and hurtful, and only ends in making sorrows more felt. But by fervent prayer let us seek to be filled with the Spirit, and to avoid whatever may grieve our gracious Comforter. All God's people have reason to sing for joy. Though we are not always singing, we should be always giving thanks; we should never want disposition for this duty, as we never want matter for it, through the whole course of our lives. Always, even in trials and afflictions, and for all things; being satisfied of their loving intent, and good tendency. God keeps believers from sinning against him, and engages them to submit one to another in all he has commanded, to promote his glory, and to fulfil their duties to each other.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 16. - Redeeming the time, because the days are evil; or, buying up for yourselves the opportunity, the idea being that of a merchant who, knowing the value of an article and the good use to which he can put it, buys it up. The opportunity is the opportunity of spreading the light and acting according to it; and the reason assigned, "because the days are evil," indicates that, owing to the prevalence of evil, there is much need for the light over which the Christian has control. It may be hinted likewise that the prevalence of evil is apt to cool the love and diminish the zeal of the Christian; hence the need for special eagerness of spirit in the matter - he must greedily watch for his opportunity.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Redeeming the time,.... Or "buying time"; a like expression is used in Daniel 2:8, which we render, gain time: but in the Chaldee text it is, "buy time": and so Jacchiades, a Jewish commentator on the place, renders it, , "ye buy this opportunity"; and the Septuagint version uses the same phrase the apostle does here; but there it seems to signify a study to prolong time, to put off the business to another season; but here taking time for a space of time, it denotes a careful and diligent use of it, an improvement of it to the best advantage; and shows that it is valuable and precious, and is not to be trifled with, and squandered away, and be lost, as it may be; for it can neither be recalled nor prolonged: and taking it for an opportunity of doing good to ourselves or others, it signifies that no opportunity of discharging our duty to God and man, of attending on the word and ordinances of the Gospel, and to the private and public exercises of religion, of gaining advantage to our own souls, or of gaining the souls of others, and of doing good either to the bodies or souls of men, should be neglected; but even all risks should be run, and means used to enjoy it: in the Syriac and Chaldee languages, "time", comes from "to redeem": the reason the apostle gives for the redemption of time is,

because the days are evil; as such are, in which iniquity abounds, and many wicked men live, and errors and heresies prevail, and are days of affliction or persecution; see Genesis 47:9.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

16. Redeeming the time—(Col 4:5). Greek, "Buying up for yourselves the seasonable time" (whenever it occurs) of good to yourselves and to others. Buying off from the vanities of "them that are without" (Col 4:5), and of the "unwise" (here in Ephesians), the opportune time afforded to you for the work of God. In a narrower sense, special favorable seasons for good, occasionally presenting themselves, are referred to, of which believers ought diligently to avail themselves. This constitutes true "wisdom" (Eph 5:15). In a larger sense, the whole season from the time that one is spiritually awakened, is to be "redeemed" from vanity for God (compare 2Co 6:2; 1Pe 4:2-4). "Redeem" implies the preciousness of the opportune season, a jewel to be bought at any price. Wahl explains, "Redeeming for yourselves (that is, availing yourselves of) the opportunity (offered you of acting aright), and commanding the time as a master does his servant." Tittmann, "Watch the time, and make it your own so as to control it; as merchants look out for opportunities, and accurately choose out the best goods; serve not the time, but command it, and it shall do what you approve." So Pindar [Pythia, 4.509], "The time followed him as his servant, and was not as a runaway slave."

because the days are evil—The days of life in general are so exposed to evil, as to make it necessary to make the most of the seasonable opportunity so long as it lasts (Eph 6:13; Ge 47:9; Ps 49:5; Ec 11:2; 12:1; Joh 12:35). Besides, there are many special evil days (in persecution, sickness, &c.) when the Christian is laid by in silence; therefore he needs the more to improve the seasonable times afforded to him (Am 5:13), which Paul perhaps alludes to.

Ephesians 5:16 Additional Commentaries
Children of Light
15Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, 16making the most of your time, because the days are evil. 17So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.…
Cross References
Galatians 1:4
who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father,

Ephesians 6:13
Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.

Colossians 4:5
Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.
Treasury of Scripture

Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.


Ecclesiastes 9:10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might; for there …

Romans 13:11 And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out …

Galatians 6:10 As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good to all men, especially …

Colossians 4:5 Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time.

the days.

Ephesians 6:13,15 Why take to you the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand …

Psalm 37:19 They shall not be ashamed in the evil time: and in the days of famine …

Ecclesiastes 11:2 Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for you know not what …

Ecclesiastes 12:1 Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth, while the evil …

Amos 5:13 Therefore the prudent shall keep silence in that time; for it is an evil time.

John 12:35 Then Jesus said to them, Yet a little while is the light with you. …

Acts 11:28,29 And there stood up one of them named Agabus, and signified by the …

1 Corinthians 7:26,29-31 I suppose therefore that this is good for the present distress, I …

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