Ephesians 6:10
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.
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(6. Conclusion (Ephesians 6:10-24).

(1) FINAL EXHORTATION to put on the whole armour of God, in order to stand fast in the struggle, not against flesh and blood, but against unearthly powers of evil (Ephesians 6:10-17).

(2) SPECIAL DESIRE OF THEIR PRAYERS, as for themselves and for all men, so especially for St. Paul himself (Ephesians 6:18-20).

(3) COMMENDATION OF TYCHICUS (Ephesians 6:21-22).

(4) CLOSING SALUTATION (Ephesians 6:23-24).]

(10) Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord.—The address “my brethren” appears to be an interpolation (probably from Philippians 3:1). Frequent as it is from St. Paul, it is not found either in this or in the Colossian Epistle.

Be strong.—Properly, be strengthened in the inner man; go on from strength to strength (as in Acts 9:22; 2Timothy 2:1). So in Philippians 4:13 we have the cognate expression, “Christ that strengtheneth me,” in whom “I can do all things.” The conception is nearly that of Ephesians 3:16; except that there the idea is rather of passive strength and firmness, here of active power to fight “in the power of God’s might,” working in us, because it works in our Master. (Comp. Ephesians 1:19-20.) It differs also from that which follows. “Christ in us” is here our life and indwelling strength; in the next verses the likeness of Christ, as manifested in various graces, is the armour “put on” for the battle.

Ephesians 6:10-11. The apostle having delivered the preceding precepts respecting relative duties, now adds a general exhortation to the believing Ephesians, to be hearty and zealous in the performance of all their duties, which he enforces by the discovery of another deep article of the mystery of God; namely, that evil angels are leagued together against men, and are continually occupied in tempting them to sin. Finally Το λοιπον, as to what remains; my brethren — This is the only place in this epistle where he uses this compellation. Soldiers frequently use it to each other in the field. Be strong in the Lord — Since every relation in life brings along with it corresponding duties, and requires vigour and resolution in the discharge of them, whatever therefore the circumstance or situation may be which you are in, see that you do not rely on your own strength, but apply to the Lord, for his strength, and arm yourselves with the power of his might

Confiding therein by faith, persuaded that nothing else will suffice to enable you to withstand the assaults of your spiritual enemies, and to do and suffer the will of God concerning you. Remember, that to be weak and remain so, is the way to be overcome and perish. Put on the whole armour of God — The Greek word here used, πανοπλια, means a complete suit of armour, offensive as well as defensive; consisting in the exercise of all those Christian graces with which we are furnished by God, to be used in his strength, as well to annoy the enemy, as to defend ourselves: and it appears, by the particular description which the apostle here gives of it, that it includes every sort of armour, and is adapted to the defence of every part liable to be attacked. He says, not armour, but whole armour; and the expression is repeated Ephesians 6:13, because of the strength and subtlety of our enemies, and because of an evil day of sore trial being at hand. Macknight thinks the apostle contrasts the graces and virtues which he mentions, with the complete armour fabled by the heathen poets to have been fabricated by the gods, and bestowed on their favourite heroes. “That armour was vastly inferior to the complete armour of God. For, 1st, The Christian’s complete armour is really of divine workmanship, and is actually bestowed on the Christian soldier; whereas the other is mere fiction. 2d, The armour said to have been given by the heathen gods, consisting of brass and steel, could only defend the body of the hero who was covered with it; but the complete armour given by the true God, consisting of the Christian virtues, is useful for defending the minds of the faithful against all the temptations with which their enemies attack them. 3d, The complete armour of God gives strength to the Christian soldier in the battle; and therefore is far preferable to any armour made of metals, which may defend, but cannot strengthen the body of the warrior.” That ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil — Against all his artifices and subtle methods, against all the snares he may lay for you, and all the rage and fury with which he may attack you. The original expression, μεθοδειας, signifies crafty ways. The apostle does not simply intend the temptations which arise from the motions of the flesh, the love of pleasure, the fear of persecution, the contagion of evil example, the solicitations of the wicked, the sophisms of the philosophers and the unbelieving Jews, and the false glosses of heretical teachers in the church itself; but all these temptations as prepared and pointed against men, by such skilful, experienced, and malicious enemies as the devil and his angels. See the next verse.

6:10-18 Spiritual strength and courage are needed for our spiritual warfare and suffering. Those who would prove themselves to have true grace, must aim at all grace; and put on the whole armour of God, which he prepares and bestows. The Christian armour is made to be worn; and there is no putting off our armour till we have done our warfare, and finished our course. The combat is not against human enemies, nor against our own corrupt nature only; we have to do with an enemy who has a thousand ways of beguiling unstable souls. The devils assault us in the things that belong to our souls, and labour to deface the heavenly image in our hearts. We must resolve by God's grace, not to yield to Satan. Resist him, and he will flee. If we give way, he will get ground. If we distrust either our cause, or our Leader, or our armour, we give him advantage. The different parts of the armour of heavy-armed soldiers, who had to sustain the fiercest assaults of the enemy, are here described. There is none for the back; nothing to defend those who turn back in the Christian warfare. Truth, or sincerity, is the girdle. This girds on all the other pieces of our armour, and is first mentioned. There can be no religion without sincerity. The righteousness of Christ, imputed to us, is a breastplate against the arrows of Divine wrath. The righteousness of Christ implanted in us, fortifies the heart against the attacks of Satan. Resolution must be as greaves, or armour to our legs; and to stand their ground or to march forward in rugged paths, the feet must be shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace. Motives to obedience, amidst trials, must be drawn from a clear knowledge of the gospel. Faith is all in all in an hour of temptation. Faith, as relying on unseen objects, receiving Christ and the benefits of redemption, and so deriving grace from him, is like a shield, a defence every way. The devil is the wicked one. Violent temptations, by which the soul is set on fire of hell, are darts Satan shoots at us. Also, hard thoughts of God, and as to ourselves. Faith applying the word of God and the grace of Christ, quenches the darts of temptation. Salvation must be our helmet. A good hope of salvation, a Scriptural expectation of victory, will purify the soul, and keep it from being defiled by Satan. To the Christian armed for defense in battle, the apostle recommends only one weapon of attack; but it is enough, the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. It subdues and mortifies evil desires and blasphemous thoughts as they rise within; and answers unbelief and error as they assault from without. A single text, well understood, and rightly applied, at once destroys a temptation or an objection, and subdues the most formidable adversary. Prayer must fasten all the other parts of our Christian armour. There are other duties of religion, and of our stations in the world, but we must keep up times of prayer. Though set and solemn prayer may not be seasonable when other duties are to be done, yet short pious prayers darted out, always are so. We must use holy thoughts in our ordinary course. A vain heart will be vain in prayer. We must pray with all kinds of prayer, public, private, and secret; social and solitary; solemn and sudden: with all the parts of prayer; confession of sin, petition for mercy, and thanksgiving for favours received. And we must do it by the grace of God the Holy Spirit, in dependence on, and according to, his teaching. We must preserve in particular requests, notwithstanding discouragements. We must pray, not for ourselves only, but for all saints. Our enemies are mighty, and we are without strength, but our Redeemer is almighty, and in the power of his mighty we may overcome. Wherefore we must stir up ourselves. Have not we, when God has called, often neglected to answer? Let us think upon these things, and continue our prayers with patience.Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord - Paul had now stated to the Ephesians the duties which they were to perform. He had considered the various relations of life which they sustained, and the obligations resulting from them. He was not unaware that in the discharge of their duties they would need strength from above. He knew that they had great and mighty foes, and that to meet them, they needed to be clothed in the panoply of the Christian soldier. He closes, therefore, by exhorting them to put on all the strength which they could to meet the enemies with which they had to contend; and in the commencement of his exhortation he reminds them that it was only by the strength of the Lord that they could hope for victory. To be "strong in the Lord," is:

(1) to be strong or courageous in his cause;

(2) to feel that he is our strength, and to rely on him and his promises.

10. my brethren—Some of the oldest manuscripts omit these words. Some with Vulgate retain them. The phrase occurs nowhere else in the Epistle (see, however, Eph 6:23); if genuine, it is appropriate here in the close of the Epistle, where he is urging his fellow soldiers to the good fight in the Christian armor. Most of the oldest manuscripts for "finally," read, "henceforward," or "from henceforth" (Ga 6:17).

be strong—Greek, "be strengthened."

in the power of his might—Christ's might: as in Eph 1:19, it is the Father's might.

Be strong; or, strengthen yourselves; i.e. be courageous, and constant in the practice of your duty, against the devil and all his assaults.

In the Lord: not in yourselves, but in the Lord Jesus Christ, in whom your strength lies, and from whom by faith you may obtain it: see Philippians 4:13 2 Timothy 2:1.

And in the power of his might; or mighty power, see Ephesians 1:19: q.d. Though your own strength be but weakness, yet Christ’s power is mighty, and he can communicate enough to you.

Finally, my brethren,.... This is the conclusion of the apostle's exhortations, in which he addresses the saints as his brethren; which appellation he uses, not merely as a familiar way of speaking among the Jews, but in regard to them as regenerate persons, and of the same family and household of God with himself; and he calls them so, to show his humility, and as a proof of his affection to them, and with a design to encourage them to their duty, as follows:

be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might; which is directed to, partly on account of the things before exhorted to, which could not be performed in their own strength; and partly with respect to their many and potent enemies hereafter mentioned, against whom they had no might nor power of their own; and therefore the apostle points out the Lord Jesus Christ unto them, in whom are strength, power, and might, even everlasting strength, to enable them to perform their duty, and to fight against every enemy, sin, Satan, and the world; for though they are weak, and strength in themselves, and can do nothing of themselves, and without Christ; yet since there is strength in him, which is communicable to them, they may expect it from him, and depend upon it; and they may come at, or strengthen themselves in it, and by it, by meditation on it, by prayer for it, by waiting on Christ in his own ways, by exercising faith upon him, and through the Spirit, who strengthens them from him with might in the inward man.

{12} Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

(12) He concludes the other part of this epistle with a grave exhortation, that all are ready and fight constantly, trusting in spiritual weapons, until their enemies are completely put to flight. And first of all he warns us to take up the armour of God, for with it alone may our enemy be dispatched.

Ephesians 6:10.[296] After this special table of domestic duties laid down since v. 21, now follows, in a full energetic effusion down to Ephesians 6:20, a general final exhortation, winding up the whole paraenetic portion of the Epistle (Ephesians 4:1 ff.).

τὸ λοιπόν] as concerns the rest, namely, what you have still to do in addition to what has been hitherto mentioned. Comp. 2 Corinthians 13:11; Php 3:1; Php 4:8; 1 Thessalonians 4:1; 2 Thessalonians 3:1.

ἐνδυναμοῦσθε ἐν κυρίῳ] denotes the Christian strengthening, which cannot subsist outside of Christ, but only in Him as the life-element of the Christian (Php 4:13). As to ἐνδυναμοῦσθαι, to become strong, gain strength, which is not a middle (“corroborate vos,” Piscator), see on Romans 4:20.

καὶ ἐν τῷ κράτει τῆς ἰσχύος αὐτοῦ] and by means of the might of His strength, which might, namely, must produce the strengthening in you. As to the respective notions, see on Ephesians 1:19. The καί is not explicative, but annexes to the element, in which the strengthening is to take place, the effective principle of it (2 Corinthians 12:9). “Domini virtus nostra est,” Bengel.

[296] On vv. 10–17, see Winzer, Leipz. Pfingstprogramm, 1840.

Ephesians 6:10-20. General concluding exhortation, following up the injunctions bearing on the particular, domestic duties. This comprehensive charge, which is expressed in terms of the Christian’s spiritual warfare, the powers of evil with which he has to contend, and the weapons with which he is to arm himself, brings the Epistle worthily to its close.

10. Finally] Lit., “for the rest;” “for what remains.” This may possibly mean “for the future,” “from henceforth” (R. V. marg.). But the more probable reference is to “what remains of thought and precept.” Had the Epistle dwelt on spiritual weakness as a previous characteristic of Ephesian Christian life, the other alternative might have been preferable; but it has not. For the Gr. phrase (identically, or nearly so), cp. Matthew 26:45 (A. V. “now”); 1 Corinthians 7:29; 2 Corinthians 13:11; Php 3:1; Php 4:8; 1 Thessalonians 4:1; 2 Thessalonians 3:1; 2 Timothy 4:8; Hebrews 10:13.—“Wisely does the Apostle, after the special injunctions to husbands and wives, &c., now in general enjoin it on all together to be strong in the Lord” (St Jerome). And observe that the deep secrets of spiritual victory now to be spoken of are necessary to the spiritual performance of the common duties just enjoined.

my brethren] These words are probably to be omitted; a possible insertion by transcribers from Php 3:1; Php 4:8.—The documentary evidence is scarcely decisive, but the absence elsewhere in the Epistle of the address “Brethren” is in favour of omission.

be strong] The Lat. versions have confortamini; a reminder of the true idea of “comfort,” “comforter,” in older English usage. See on Ephesians 6:22 below. For the same Gr. verb, in the (same) middle voice, cp. Acts 9:22; Romans 4:20; 2 Timothy 2:1; and in the active voice, Php 4:13; 1 Timothy 1:12; 2 Timothy 4:17. The tense here is present, not aorist, and suggests rather the maintenance than the attainment of strength. Their “Strength” (see e.g. Psalm 59:17) was already and permanently theirs; let it be continuously used.—Cp. 1 Corinthians 16:13 (where, however, “be strong” represents another Gr. word), and 1 Peter 5:8-11, for close parallels to the thought and precept here.

in the Lord] This phrase, or its strict equivalents, occurs about 35 times in the Epistle.—The whole secret of spiritual strength resides in union with “the Lord.” “In Him,” and there alone, is there “no condemnation” (Romans 8:1); “in Him” is the fountain of spiritual vitality, to be made our own, in practical efficacy, only as we “abide in Him” (John 15:4-7). And these two aspects of benefit “in Christ” constitute together the believer’s cause of strength; a strength the only alternative to which is spiritual impotence (John 15:5).

and in the power &c.] See Ephesians 1:19 (and note there) for the same Gr. The Gr. rendered “might” tends to denote strength rather as substratum or resource; the Gr. rendered “power”, rather as outcome or exercise. We may paraphrase, “in the energy of Him the Strong.”—The phrase defines, so to speak, that aspect of the Lord in Whom they were which was to be specially used in the great conflict. Elsewhere (1 John 5:20) the prominent thought is, “We are in Him that is True,” Veritable, Real. Here it is, “Ye are in Him that is Able.”

10–20. The Spiritual Combat: the Secret of Strength; the Antagonists; the Armour; Intercessory Prayer

Ephesians 6:10. Τὸ λοιπὸν, finally) The particle or form of concluding, and of rousing the attention, as it were, to an important subject; 2 Corinthians 13:11.—ἀδελφοὶ,[98] brethren) He thus addresses them in this one passage of the epistle. Nowhere do soldiers use to one another the title brethren more than in the field of battle.—ἐνδυναμοῦσθε, be strong) Those, and those only, who are strong in themselves, are fitted for putting on the whole armour [the panoply].—καὶ) a Hendiadys.—κράτει τῆς ἰσχύος, by the power of His might) This is said of Christ, as Ephesians 1:19 of the Father.

[98] By some accident or other, the pronoun μου, the omission of which is countenanced by both Ed., has crept into the Germ. Vers.—E. B.

Gg Vulg., later Syr., read ἀδελφοὶ, but omit μου, which Rec. Text adds. BD(Δ) Lucif. omit both words. A adds ἀδελφοὶ after ἐνδυναμοῦσθε, instead of before it. The fact of this being the only place where the ἀδελφοὶ is read, and also this being an encyclical letter, make it probable, ἀδελφοὶ is an interpolation.—ED.

Verses 10-20. - THE CHRISTIAN WARFARE. Verse 10. - Finally. The apostle has now reached his last passage, and by this word quickens the attention of his readers and prepares them for a counsel eminently weighty in itself, and gathering up the pith and marrow, as it were, of what goes before. "My brethren," A.V., is rejected by R.V, and most modern commentators, for lack of external evidence. We note, however, that, whereas in the preceding verses he had distributed the Ephesians into groups, giving an appropriate counsel to each, he now brings them again together, and has a concluding counsel for them all. Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Compare with Ephesians 3:16, where the heavenly provision for obtaining strength is specified, and with Ephesians 4:30, where we are cautioned against a course that will fritter away that provision. The ever-recurring formula, "in the Lord," indicates the relation to Christ in which alone the strength can be experienced (comp. 2 Corinthians 12:9). The might is Christ's, but by faith it becomes our strength. As the steam-engine genders the dynamic force, which belts and wheels communicate to the inert machinery of the factory, so Christ is the source of that spiritual strength which through faith is communicated to all his people. To be strong is our duty; to be weak is our sin. Strong trust, strong courage, strong endurance, strong hope. strong love, may all be had from him, if only our fellowship with him be maintained in uninterrupted vigor. Ephesians 6:10Finally (τὸ λοιπόν)

See on 2 Corinthians 13:11. Omit my brethren.

Be strong (ἐνδυναμουοῦσθε)

Lit., be strengthened. Compare Romans 4:20, and Philippians 4:13. Power of His might. See on Ephesians 1:19.

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