Be no more children - Children, here, are opposed to the perfect man in the preceding verse; and the state of both is well explained by the apostle' s allusions. The man is grown up strong and healthy, and has attained such a measure or height as qualifies him for the most respectable place in the ranks of his country.
The child is ignorant, weak, and unsteady, tossed about in the nurse' s arms, or whirled round in the giddy sports or mazes of youth; this seems to be the apostle' s allusion. Being tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, refers to some kind of ancient play, but what I cannot absolutely determine; probably to something similar to a top, or to our paper kite.
By the sleight of men - The words ͅ refer to the arts used by gamesters, who employ false dice that will always throw up one kind of number, which is that by which those who play with them cannot win.
Cunning craftiness - It is difficult to give a literal translation of the original words: ͅ · "By cunning, for the purpose of using the various means of deception." signifies craft and subtlety in general, cheating and imposition: , from which we have our term method, signifies a wile, a particular sleight, mode of tricking and deceiving; it is applied to the arts which the devil uses to deceive and destroy souls; see Ephesians 6:11, called there the Wiles of the devil. From this it seems that various arts were used, both by the Greek sophists and the Judaizing teachers, to render the Gospel of none effect, or to adulterate and corrupt it.
Other Adam Clarke entries containing Ephesians 4:14:
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