A human being lives, but he is given life.
New King James Version (NKJV)
Walk in Love
1 Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. 2 And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma. 3 But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; 4 neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not be partakers with them.
Walk in Light
8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), 10 finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret. 13 But all things that are exposed are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light. 14 Therefore He says: “Awake, you who sleep, Arise from the dead, And Christ will give you light.”
Walk in Wisdom
15 See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, 16 redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, 19 speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, 20 giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, 21 submitting to one another in the fear of God..
Today I would like to leave you with an illustration that I think goes very well with today’s topic;
The Louvre in Paris is perhaps the most famous art museum in the world. It displays originals by such masters as Delacroix, Michelangelo, Rubens, da Vinci, Ingres, Vermeer, and many others.
Since 1793, the Louvre has encouraged aspiring artists to come and copy the masters. Some of our most famous modern artists have done that and have become better painters by copying the best the world has ever known.
An article in Smithsonian magazine tells about Amal Dagher, a 63-year-old man who has been duplicating art at the Louvre for 30 years. Dagher remains in awe of the masters and continues to learn from them. He said, “If you’re too satisfied with yourself, you can’t improve.”
Paul instructed us to be “imitators of God” (Ephesians 5:1). In his first letter to the Thessalonians, he commended the believers because they were becoming like the Lord and setting an example for others (1Th 1:6, 7, 8, 9, 10-note).
Like the Louvre copyists, we’ll never reach perfection before we get to heaven. Even so, we must resist the temptation to be satisfied with our present imitation of Jesus. We need to keep looking to Him, learning from Him, and asking for His help. Let’s copy the Master. —David C. Egner
More like the Master I would live and grow,
More of His love to others I would show;
More self-denial, like His in Galilee,
More like the Master I long to ever be. —Gabriel
To become like Christ, we must learn from the Master
Personal Reflection and Discussion
I am not sure but I think verse 11 is talking about things that happen as a result of sinful acts. You know like someone could steal because their children were starving and this is the only way (they think) to save them. In other words, don’t benefit from wrong doings or simply turn away and let someone else benefit either. We are to have nothing to do with it, it is still a sin. All of Pauls talk of fornication had to do with the fact that Ephesues had a temple dedicated to Diana and they performed all kinds of sexual perversions in this temple. Unfortunately there are many such perversions today as well. As a follower of Christ we must not even think on such things, verse 12. Letting God lead in our lives is not easy at times but I don’t like who I am when I slip. Asking for forgiveness is easy but climbing back up out of the pit is so not easy. That shows me I need to learn to let Jesus give me a hand up. We (humans) make things so hard.
What strikes me most about this passage is v. 1, where Paul admonishes us to imitate God. In my opinion, so much hinges on this approach. This reminds me of a therapeutic method often used when counseling someone suffering from depression. The person is encouraged to act as if he is happy, although he doesn’t really feel it. And what happens? The more he imitates happiness, the happier he is, and his depression is alleviated. There is such wisdom in Paul’s words.
How can I be loving and not lust-filled? How can I walk in the light and not the darkness? How can I be wise instead of foolish? Imitate Christ. The more I imitate Him, the less I am my sinful self. I agree with you, Rosi, I don’t like who I am when I slip either. All I can do is have faith that God is faithful, and do my best to walk in His footsteps.
That is the $1,000,000,000.00 question. How do we become more like Him? It is true we are not perfect and never will be until His return. But that should not stop us from trying. I agree it all comes down to faith in Him.
I like how it encourages, more like instructs us to walk as children of light (of understanding) finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. We’re called to live judiciouily or deliberatily, in contrast to those in darkness who do things without even giving much thought to it. They live in the moment and are led by every whim of feeling whether good or bad. It’s almost like a child, when they do something dumb and you ask them why, and the famous answer is…”I don’t know.” Proverbs14: 18 says, “A fool inherts folly, but the prudent (or those who would think twice before doing something) are crowned with knowledge” but not just any knowledge, but the knowledge of God. God wants us to give things thought and be whole hearted people, not like the blind being led. He calls us to wake up and live deliberate lives, praticing self control, but not like the Pharisees for show, but in actually humbling ourselves trusting God. Not a blind faith but in one that calls us to come and reason with Him. This shows me God’s character and his will is…that we freely choose to come to him and get to know him.
I like your thoughts Amalia, thank you