“I therefore, the Prisoner of the Lord...” Ephesians 4:1 Prisoner of the Lord
What it meant to be a Roman Prisoner? Uniform: What the prisoner wore when they came. Would deteriorate soon due to dampness and overuse. Lighting: No natural light. After sunset no light was permitted. Negative psychological impact. Chains: Around 7 kgs. Rough iron. Rusting leading to infection. Sound of constant creaking and limbs can become useless due to malnourishment and disuse. Food: Half the portion of a slave. Nourishment and survival only on what family/friends brought in. Bedding: Cold floor or a rough sleeping pallet. Blanket: Their outer cloak they wore during the day. (2 Tim 4:13). Hygiene: Terribly unclean. No baths, no haircut. Lice, bedbugs and infection. Overcrowded. No toilet facilities. The dead were piled up in a corner till later.
How long did Paul spend in prison? A total of 6 years approx. Or 1/5th of his ministry. I earn Frequent Jail Miles The New Testament In Its Original Order: A Faithful Version With Commentary, Appendix Q
Prisoner of the Lord Hear the heart’s attitude of the Apostle!
I’m Not a prisoner of… Conditions Circumstance Campaign Cares Chance Consequences Condemnation
Hi! I am Paul, a Prisoner of Jesus Christ.
Question 1: Who’s Prisoner are you?
What does it mean to be the Prisoner of the Lord?
Mamertine Prison, Rome.— The Subterranean Cell in Which St. Paul and St. Peter are Said to Have Been Confined What does it mean to be a Prisoner Rights: No rights; No demands. Relinquishment: Absolute and complete surrender. Representation: No representation; Be my protector; Total loss of self identity. Remuneration: No rewards; No expectations.
`Personal ambition, personal fulfillment, personal gratification – these have all become part of the language of evangelical Christianity – and part of what it means to have a `personal relationship with Jesus Christ`. Instead of teaching the New Testament gospel – where sinners are called to submit to Christ – the contemporary message is exactly the opposite: Jesus is here to fulfill all your wishes. Likening Him to a personal assistant or a personal trainer, many churchgoers speak of a personal saviour who is eager to do their bidding and help them in their quest for self-satisfaction or individual accomplishment. --John MacArthur. Slave. The Hidden Truth about Your Identity In Christ. Page 14-15.
Question 2: Is He just a Personal Savior or is He your Lord?
But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. Romans 6:17-18.
Doulos = Slave EUPHEMISM IN TRANSLATION Doulos appears 124 times in the original text. Greek language has almost half a dozen words that can mean servant but never DOULOS.
John 15:15 seems to make the ‘slave ‘ language redundant. However, apostles of Christ refer to themselves as ‘Slaves of Christ’ long afterwards. Even friendship required submission (Jn 15:14). Jesus was not treating them just as slaves but also as both friends and confidant. Slaves were not privy to what the Master was doing. Abstract from Harris, Slaves of Christ. Downers Grove, IL: Inner Varsity Press. 1999.
1 Peter 2:9. `But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession...` 1 Cor 6:20. for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. Rev 22:4. `They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads`.
Still expecting a reward for being a Prisoner?
The UnprofitableDoulos So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do. Luke 17:10. Traditional prison in Philippi where Paul and Silas were held
Apostle to the gentiles
Three Missionary journeys
4 Prison Epistles
Established numerous Churches
Skybalon. Phil 3:8
I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing. 2 Tim 4:7-8
Question 3: Do you want to be held a captive by Him?
So what about Sonship?
Gal 4:7. So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.
For ye have not received the spirit of bondage (douleia: slavery or condition of a slave) again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. Rom 8:15.
Like the cross, slavery is both paradigm and paradox. The cross, the most excruciating and pervasive symbol of suffering and death in the first century has come to represent for the followers of Jesus the only way to peace and life. In the same sense slavery, which represents the total denial of freedom, becomes for the follower of Christ, the Servant Saviour, the only means to the realization of the true freedom…[Jesus] came in the form of a slave, not to offer us freedom from slavery but a new kind of slavery that is freedom. Michael Card. A Better Freedom (Downers grove, IL: Inter Varsity Press, 2009. 23-24.
Our Example is Christ Himself Heb 5:5 So also Christ did not exalt himself to be made a high priest, but was appointed by him who said to him, "You are my Son, today I have begotten you"; Heb 5:8 Although he was a son, he learned obedience through what he suffered.
Hi! I`m Bond, James Bond Servant of the Lord. James 1:1
Question 4: What is our heart’s attitude?
Once our heart understands the attitude of the apostle, we are then ready to read the rest of the chapter.
I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, Ephesians 4:1. http://historylink102.com/italy/s-pauls-prison.htm
I Eph 4:1. Calling of a Christian Walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called.
II Eph 4: 2. Character of a Christian with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love
III Eph 4:3. Constraint of a Christian Eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
IV Eph 4:4-6. Confidence of a Christian There is one body and one Spirit--just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call
V Eph 4:7. Comfort of a Christian …grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ's gift.
VI Eph 4:8. Conquest of a Christian … he led a host of captives, and he gave gifts to men.
VII Eph 4:11-12. Collaboration of a Christian …For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ,.
Question 5: Are you willing to work on this friendship?