The Eph 5 filling command, within the sphere of God's new temple-church, sets trajectories of application for the following household code
Just finished the long exegetical section on Ephesians 5 command to be filled in Spirit for my up-coming November Evangelical Theological Society paper . . . some editing I am sure, but drafted! Here is the summary for those interested:
A contextual-exegetical exploration and summary places the Ephesians 5 filling command within the sphere of God’s new temple-church (Eph 2:19-22). The community of believers is God’s new sacred space, his multihousehold temple-church that is a dwelling place of God in Spirit, which is a reflection modeling of God’s cosmic reconciliation. Herein lays the potential importance of the following household code: the relationship-trio (wives-husbands, children-fathers, slaves-masters) must in someway indicate the architecture of the new temple, first, as the space where the cosmic reconciliation begins to expand, but also, second, in demonstrating the subversive nature of the work of God through the Messiah in reordering the basic unit of society under the new paterfamilias, the Father. The household code, then, offers trajectories of significance for church growth outputs and outcomes. The relationship-trio, somehow, pushes us to reimagine church growth beyond mere numbers of people in a “sanctuary” built with human hands; potential outcomes that require evangelistic outputs (i.e., activities) that are meant to subvert the status quo and, as a result, demonstrate a reordering reflective of God’s cosmic reconciliation.
*For those following my thoughts on "Church Growth" as I prepare a paper for the upcoming November 2015 annual meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society in Atlanta. Other Not by the Numbers posts >>
Chip M. Anderson, advocate for biblical social action; pastor of an urban church plant in the Hill neighborhood of New Haven, CT; husband, father, author, former Greek & NT professor; and, 19 years involved with social action.