Ephesians 5:10 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Ephesians 5:10, NIV: and find out what pleases the Lord.

Ephesians 5:10, ESV: and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord.

Ephesians 5:10, KJV: Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.

Ephesians 5:10, NASB: as you try to learn what is pleasing to the Lord.

Ephesians 5:10, NLT: Carefully determine what pleases the Lord.

Ephesians 5:10, CSB: testing what is pleasing to the Lord.

What does Ephesians 5:10 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Two themes are noted in this brief verse. First, a believer is to be discerning. Paul notes elsewhere the connection between discernment and pleasing God, in Romans 12:2: "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God." Discernment is also important when taking communion (1 Corinthians 11:29). Prayer involves discernment (Philippians 1:9). Scripture also discerns the thoughts and intentions of people (Hebrews 4:12).

Second, a believer is to please the Lord. Believers are to not live as reckless "people-pleasers" (Ephesians 6:6) even when servants of a master, though we are to serve well. Unbelievers cannot please God (Romans 8:8). We are to live to uplift and serve others (Romans 15:2; Hebrews 11:6). Husbands and wives must consider how to please both one another and the Lord (1 Corinthians 7:32–34). However, the believer's ultimate aim is to please God, not people (1 Thessalonians 2:4; 4:1).