Tomorrow we continue our series called Relate: Walking in Love. We’ve seen that in order for relationships to work in the context of the church we must fulfill our calling to make disciples. Part of this is done by building relationships. Last week, we saw that building relationships into ones where we walk together in love means that we must change. This week, we’re going to see that the way we build relationships by changing is through imitating God. Take a minute to read over this week’s text from Ephesians 5:1-14:
1 Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. 2 And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
3 But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints. 4 Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving. 5 For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no 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 become partners with them; 8 for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), 10 and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. 11 Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret. 13 But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, 14 for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says,
“Awake, O sleeper,
and arise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.”
For Sunday: Ask the Lord to prepare your heart to receive this message about how you can imitate Him as His Word and Spirit changes you.
Think about the areas where you need to ask the Spirit to enable you to imitate God. Sexual immorality? Impurity? Covetousness? Foolish talk? Crude joking? None of us can carry the burden of imitating God in by our own power. He is holy and we are not. However, through Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection, He has made us capable of overcoming any sin in our life so that we may, indeed, imitate the character of our Heavenly Father, thus enabling ourselves to collectively walk together in love.