Ephesians 6:7
With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men:
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(7) With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men.—Here we ascend to a still higher quality than “singleness of heart.” To do service “with good will,” that is, gladly and cheerfully, “counting it joy to spend and to be spent” in the service, is really to serve, not as a slave, but as a freeman. Only so far as in the relation of slaves to masters there is, or has been, any shadow of the filial and parental relation, is this possible on merely human grounds. But St. Paul urges, in 1Corinthians 7:22, that the slave “when called in the Lord, becomes the Lord’s freeman,” entering a “service which is perfect freedom.” That conception, logically worked out, has ultimately destroyed slavery. Meanwhile it gave to the slave in his slavery—lightened though not yet removed—the power of service “with good will, as to the Lord.”

6:5-9 The duty of servants is summed up in one word, obedience. The servants of old were generally slaves. The apostles were to teach servants and masters their duties, in doing which evils would be lessened, till slavery should be rooted out by the influence of Christianity. Servants are to reverence those over them. They are to be sincere; not pretending obedience when they mean to disobey, but serving faithfully. And they must serve their masters not only when their master's eye is upon them; but must be strict in the discharge of their duty, when he is absent and out of the way. Steady regard to the Lord Jesus Christ will make men faithful and sincere in every station, not grudgingly or by constraint, but from a principle of love to the masters and their concerns. This makes service easy to them, pleasing to their masters, and acceptable to the Lord Christ. God will reward even the meanest drudgery done from a sense of duty, and with a view to glorify him. Here is the duty of masters. Act after the same manner. Be just to servants, as you expect they should be to you; show the like good-will and concern for them, and be careful herein to approve yourselves to God. Be not tyrannical and overbearing. You have a Master to obey, and you and they are but fellow-servants in respect to Christ Jesus. If masters and servants would consider their duties to God, and the account they must shortly give to him, they would be more mindful of their duty to each other, and thus families would be more orderly and happy.As to the Lord, and not to men - That is, he should regard his lot in life as having been ordered by Divine Providence for some wise and good purpose; and until he may be permitted to enjoy his liberty in a quiet and peaceable manner (notes, 1 Corinthians 7:21), he should perform his duties with fidelity, and feel that he was rendering acceptable service to God. This would reconcile him to much of the hardships of his lot. The feeling that "God" has ordered the circumstances of our lives, and that he has some wise and good ends to answer by it, makes us contented there; though we may feel that our fellowman may be doing us injustice. It was this principle that made the martyrs so patient under the wrongs done them by people; and this may make even a slave patient and submissive under the wrongs of a master. But let not a master think, because a pious slave shows this spirit, that, therefore, the slave feels that the master is right in withholding his freedom; nor let him suppose, because religion requires the slave to be submissive and obedient, that, therefore, it approves of what the master does. It does this no more than it sanctioned the conduct of Nero and Mary, because religion required the martyrs to be unresisting, and to allow themselves to be led to the stake. A conscientious slave may find happiness in submitting to God, and doing his will, just as a conscientious martyr may. But this does not sanction the wrong, either of the slave-owner or of the persecutor. 7. good will—expressing his feeling towards his master; as "doing the will of God from the heart" expresses the source of that feeling (Col 3:23). "Good will" is stated by Xenophon [Economics] to be the principal virtue of a slave towards his master: a real regard to his master's interest as if his own, a good will which not even a master's severity can extinguish. With good will doing service; not grudgingly or as of constraint, but freely and cheerfully.

As to the Lord, and not to men; not only regarding men your masters, but Christ your great Master. That which is done for the worst masters, and in the hardest things, is service done to Christ, when out of love to him servants bear their masters’ folly or cruelty. With good will doing service,.... To their masters; not grudgingly, with an ill will; no otherwise, nor longer than when they are forced to it; but of a ready mind, and with a cheerful spirit, taking delight in their work, and reckoning it a pleasure to serve their masters; as an Israelite that is not sold, who does his work "with his good will", and according to his own mind (b); doing what they do

as to the Lord, and not to men; not merely because it is the will of men, and they are commanded by them, and in order to please them, but because it is the will of the Lord, and is wellpleasing in his sight.

(b) Maimon. Hilchot Abadim, c. 1. sect. 7.

With good will doing service, as to the {e} Lord, and not to men:

(e) Being moved with a reverence for God, as though you served God himself.

Ephesians 6:7. μετʼ εὐνοίας δουλεύοντες [ὡς] τῷ κυρίῳ καὶ οὐκ ἀνθρώποις: with good will doing service [as] to the Lord and not to men. Further explanation of what is meant by the bond-service of Christ, viz., a service rendered with good will and as a service to the Lord Himself, not to men. μετʼ εὐνοίας means not simply with readiness, but with the disposition that wishes one well. In the NT the noun occurs only here; in 1 Corinthians 7:3 the accredited reading is not εὐνοίαν but ὀφειλήν. The TR omits ὡς before τῷ Κυρίῳ (with [748]3[749] [750], etc.). It is given, however, by [751] [752] [753] [754]*[755] [756], Vulg., Syr., etc., and is rightly inserted by LTTrWHRV. It got a place in Beza’s edition of 1598.

[748] Codex Claromontanus (sæc. vi.), a Græco-Latin MS. at Paris, edited by Tischendorf in 1852.

[749] Codex Mosquensis (sæc. ix.), edited by Matthæi in 1782.

[750] Codex Angelicus (sæc. ix.), at Rome, collated by Tischendorf and others.

[751] Codex Vaticanus (sæc. iv.), published in photographic facsimile in 1889 under the care of the Abbate Cozza-Luzi.

[752] Codex Sinaiticus (sæc. iv.), now at St. Petersburg, published in facsimile type by its discoverer, Tischendorf, in 1862.

[753] Codex Alexandrinus (sæc. v.), at the British Museum, published in photographic facsimile by Sir E. M. Thompson (1879).

[754] Codex Claromontanus (sæc. vi.), a Græco-Latin MS. at Paris, edited by Tischendorf in 1852.

[755] Codex Boernerianus (sæc. ix.), a Græco-Latin MS., at Dresden, edited by Matthæi in 1791. Written by an Irish scribe, it once formed part of the same volume as Codex Sangallensis (δ) of the Gospels. The Latin text, g, is based on the O.L. translation.

[756] Codex Porphyrianus (sæc. ix.), at St. Petersburg, collated by Tischendorf. Its text is deficient for chap. Ephesians 2:13-16.Verse 7. - With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men. Some join the last words of the preceding verse to this clause, "from the heart with good will," etc., on the ground that it is not needed for ver. 6, for if you do the will of God at all, you must do it from the heart. But one may do the will of God in a sense outwardly and formally, therefore the clause is not superfluous in ver. 6, whereas, if one does service with good will, one surely does it from the heart, so that the clause would be more superfluous here. Jesus is the Overlord of every earthly lord, and his follower has but to substitute him by faith for his earthly master to enable him to do service with good will. With good-will

Bengel quotes Xenophon: "The slave that is a steward must have good-will if he is to on thy place adequately." Compare Colossians 3:23.

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