ascended on high above the heavens (plural), taken the rebels captive, gave the
plunder to men by selecting some and gifting them with (plundered?) authority
and abilities. His purpose is to fill the whole universe with the authority of
his victory. One of the ways Christ is doing that today (in the age of the
(2 Cor. 2:14) is through the gifted people listed here who will be speaking to the saints in a progressive way. Christ will fill all things by providing his people with the things necessary for them to grow and for the body of Christ (church) to grow and reach maturity. There are many gifts given by Christ, but these are mentioned here because they provide the church what is needed to grow and develop the other gifts: 1) teaching of Christ and his Word, 2) Avoidance of false teaching. This results in all the Saints finding their place and serving correctly.
1 Cor. 12 list a variety of gifts. Here in Ephesians is a list of gifted people given by the ascended Christ.
These gifts will overlap but the progression is simple. These four/five gifts will:
kai autoV edwken touV men apostolouV touV de profhtaV touiV de
And he gave some ( “the one”) APOSTLES some (“the other”) PROPHETS some
euaggelistaV touV de poimenaV kai didaskalouV proV ton katartismon twn
EVANGELIST some SHEPHERDS and TEACHERS for the PERFECTING of the
agiwn eiV ergon diakoniaV eiV oikodomhn tou swmatoV tou cristou
SAINTS to WORK of MINISTRY to BUILDING of the body of Christ
“Pastor” shares the article (definite article) with “teacher” which makes this a list of only 4 gifts not 5, the last one being the gift of “pastor/teacher”. The wording in the Greek requires a strong overlapping of the Pastor and the Teacher. Most ancient lists like this included overlap in the positions identified.
All four/five gifts are gifts of proclaiming
All of these gifts have authority based on:
None of the gifts have authority from: 1) Man, 2) Jewish Law, 3) An Ordaining Institution (seminary),
“APOSTLES” (“apostolos”)– those appointed by Jesus as his official representatives. Commissioned messengers backed by their senders authority. – Rom. 1:1 Apostles and Prophets are already mentioned in Ephesians 2:20 and 3:5. They are foundational and appear first in 1 Cor. 12:28.
“PROPHET” (“prophetas”)- spoke for God and may have been a carry over from the Old Testament until God had finished speaking the new revelation.
“EVANGELIST” (“euangelistas”)–one who proclaims the good news. The evangelist proclaimed the gospel which he had received from the apostles. A missionary who brought the gospel into new regions. Heralds or messengers. Only mentioned again in Paul’s writings in 2 Timothy 4:5 which appears to include planting churches and establishing of congregations (Romans 1:11-15).
“SHEPHERDS” (“poimenas”)- one who leads sheep to food and protection of sheep put in his charge.which is Bible teaching. OT-Jeremiah 23:2-4, In Jer. 23:18-22 they were to declare God’s message accurately.. The word “poimen” is only used here. May refer to the “overseer” position in local congregations elsewhere in the NT Philippians 1:1 along with elders. Acts 20:17, 28; 1 Peter 5:1-2; John 21:16 - “Shepherd” is used in these verses. They manage the church in 1 Thes. 5:12 and Romans 12:8.
“TEACHER” (“didaskalos”)- a teacher. They were to explain Scripture, the gospels (Jesus) and the new revelation. Jewish synagogues had “teachers” who provided biblical instruction and also trained others to do the same. The “teacher” in the church was probably fulfilling the role of the Jewish teacher. The Teacher is linked with the Pastor by a single definite article in the Greek which indicates a close association between the two men or with in one man in the local congregation. The teacher is seen in Acts 15:35; 18:11, 25; Rom. 2:20, 21; Col. 3:16; Heb. 4:12. When applied to teaching apostolic doctrine see: 1 Cor. 4:17; Rom. 16:17; 2 Thes. 2;15; 2 Tim. 2:2; 3:10. Specially chosen men in 2 Tim. 1:13-14; 2:1-2; 1 Tim. 3:2; 5:17; Titus 1:9. Teachers also urged people to live what they heard Ephesians 4:20-21
“PERFECTING”, “EQUIPPING”, “QUALIFICATION” (“katartismos”)-The word was a technical medical term for setting of a bone. It describes the act by which people or things are properly conditioned and made ready for service, work, function. This word was also used to describe the work of Greek philosophers or teachers.
“BUILDING” (“oikodoman”)- building, building up, edification. The word is an expression of development.