Ephesians 4:16 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Ephesians 4:16, NIV: From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

Ephesians 4:16, ESV: from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.

Ephesians 4:16, KJV: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

Ephesians 4:16, NASB: from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

Ephesians 4:16, NLT: He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.

Ephesians 4:16, CSB: From him the whole body, fitted and knit together by every supporting ligament, promotes the growth of the body for building itself up in love by the proper working of each individual part.

What does Ephesians 4:16 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

After describing Christ as the head, in verse 15, Paul now discusses the rest of the spiritual "body" of the church. Each individual part must work together, according to its design and purpose, and in the intended way, in order for the body to function properly. This means that when one person is weak, the rest of the body of Christ suffers.

A healthy body, functioning in harmony, also "makes the body grow." Spiritually speaking, when the members of the body of Christ work together in unity, as we should, the church "builds itself up in love." It attracts others to the gospel of Christ, and those people are added to the family of God (Acts 2:47). A church known for speaking the truth in love will be known as a healthy church, a healthy body. Those in the body all function and function together to accomplish the tasks of the church (Acts 2:42–47).

This is an important message for modern congregations. Church health, rather than church size, is what defines success within a congregation. Vibrant and lived-out Christianity was the critical factor in the rapid numerical growth and spread of the early church.