Ephesians 5:27 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Ephesians 5:27, NIV: and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.

Ephesians 5:27, ESV: so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.

Ephesians 5:27, KJV: That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

Ephesians 5:27, NASB: that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless.

Ephesians 5:27, NLT: He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault.

Ephesians 5:27, CSB: He did this to present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or anything like that, but holy and blameless.

What does Ephesians 5:27 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Focusing on Christ's relationship to the church, Paul notes that Christ's goal as the church's husband is to "present the church to himself in splendor." Christ desires the church to stand before Him in brilliance and triumph. His desire is for believers to one day appear before Him without any flaws or marks or imperfections. Particularly on the wedding day, a bride seeks to look her absolute best for her husband, and Christ wants the church to look its best for Him when that day comes.

The purpose for Christ's relationship with the church is to bring on greater holiness. The reference to blemishes is not about physical appearance, but about the church being pure before the Lord. To be holy is to be set apart. To be "without blemish" is to be without a mark or problem. This is the same standard the Old Testament required of animals used in sacrificial offerings. They could not have any "blemish." God desires we come before Him with a clean heart (Psalm 24:4).