On the one hand the context is the internal workings of the church as v5 "one baptism", and v7 "each one of us" members of the church. On the other hand God cannot shape the development of the church if He is not in charge of "all" the outside influences which bear down upon those inside. Whereas other verses may tell us that God is in charge of the rulers and authorities outside the church, does "all" in Eph 4v6 refer to these or just the internal workings of the church? e.g. unity of the Spirit, baptism and giving of gifts.

  • This verse seems to indicate that God is the father and ruler of all the church, but that doesn't mean that He's not also the ruler of all the world. As you said, other verses tell us that God is in charge of everything inside and outside the church. That doesn't mean that this verse needs to be talking about everyone. If God is ruler than everyone, then He is also the ruler of the church. In the context of unity in the church, it would make sense to bring out that specific aspect of God's authority. Mar 8, 2019 at 23:36

2 Answers 2


The passage in Ephesians you clearly and correctly point out is referring to all in the body of Christ or the Church.

“But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” ‭‭John‬ ‭1:12-13‬ ‭ESV‬‬

People born of the will of God who first receive and then believe, are then and only then regenerated and allowed to become part of the all. Faith proceeds regeneration.

Where does it say that God has power over all? Power and authority are different. Power is strength if you will but authority is legal right.

“And Jesus came and said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.” ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭28:18‬ ‭ESV‬‬

He has all the legal rights and this after the resurrection from the dead.

  • I’m failing to understand the question. There are two statements being made (separately) on the one hand God has authority over the Church and on the other hand He has authority over those outside the Church humans, heavenly beings, whatever creature you like. So what’s the question? What is excluded from everything inside the Church and everything outside the Church? Mar 9, 2019 at 15:10
  • After the resurrection Jesus says "All authority...has been given to me" but does that tell us when this authority was given?
    – C. Stroud
    Aug 15, 2021 at 18:08

Eph. 3:20 says:-

"Now to the one who is able to do, exceptionally beyond all things, what we are asking or are perceiving, according to the power which is working in us, 21 the glory is to him in the congregation."

Here Paul is addressing only the Christian Congregation (Church) thus Ch 4 vvs 1-7 is only addressed to the Christian Congregation (Church) not to outsiders as vs 7 says:-

"4:7 Now the grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of the gift of the Christ."

These "gifts" are not for outsiders, thus 4:6 address's only Christians.

Bible quotes are from 'mlvbible.org.'

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