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That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,

New Defender's Study Bible Notes

5:26 by the word. Sanctification and cleansing of “the church”—which certainly must include individual members—is accomplished through the Word. Note also John 17:17.

5:27 glorious church. There is no spotless church in existence today, but when Christ returns, “we shall be like Him” (I John 3:2), and shall all be in “the general assembly and church of the firstborn;” with “the spirits of just men made perfect” (Hebrews 12:23).

5:29 spiritual songs. The words “psalms” and “hymns” are transliterations from the Greek, and “songs” (Greek ode) is a generic term for songs in general, thus needing modification by “spiritual” in this context.

5:29 hated his own flesh. A modern pseudo-psychological cliche is that the troubles in modern life are due to lack of “self-love” in criminals and anti-social misfits. The Scriptural fact is, however, that no man hates himself—everyone loves himself too much. The first prophesied characteristic of the “perilous” last days is that “men shall be lovers of their own selves” (II Timothy 3:2).

5:30 his bones. See Genesis 2:23. The amazing truth of the union of Christ and His church thus is tied to the historical reality of the union of Adam and Eve. Just as Adam gave himself for Eve, so that she could be given life from his opened side, so “Christ also loved the church, and gave Himself for it” (Ephesians 5:25).

5:31 father and mother. This phrase is cited from Genesis 2:24. This passage was also quoted by Christ in His teaching on the permanence of marriage (Matthew 19:5-6). Thus both Christ and Paul confirmed the historicity and vital significance of the Genesis record of the creation of man.

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