Walk in Love
“Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”
- Exhortation to self-sacrificial love– Paul’s discussion of loves serves also as an introduction to further instructions on holy living (vv.3-20). IMITATORS. Believers are to imitate God’s Holiness in all of their conduct. They are to be like him, not as slaves trying to earn a wage, but as children and beloved children at that! Loved. Because when he gave himself up for us, it was the supreme act of his love. (John 15:13) (ESV Study bible commentary)
◦ whenever you see a therefore you gotta ask what is it there for. The previous chapter ends with Eph. 4:32 “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another as God in Christ forgave you.” so because we have been forgiven by God, we have been given an example, thats why he calls us to imitate, because He has forgiven us. He has displayed His kindness, His tenderheartedness. Romans 5:6 “For while we were still weak at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.” I was weak, and it doesn’t just say weak, but still weak… there was no time of strength before, and no hope to be strong later, but “at the right time” God is all-knowing, and knew when to jump into history to change our eternal destination. And according to Ephesians 1:4 “Even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. . .” Christ died for us at the right time, but not just for some decent or good people, Romans 5:6 hits the nail on the head, “Christ died for the ungodly” Spurgeon puts it well in His book “All of Grace” in expounding on this idea. Christ Jesus, died for those who were his enemies, He decided to adopt and give himself up for those who had wronged him. The perfect example of love is Christ. Psalm 16:2 “I say to the Lord, ‘You are my Lord; I have no good apart from you.”
▪ I know I am called to imitate Christ. After reading this passage, I see His love, and His call to follow after Him, to learn from Him, Christ “gave himself up for us, as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” I’m called to imitate that, wow! I cannot do that on my own, God please grant me the grace and perspective to do so. But the passage continues on.. Grab your pen, pencil, highlighter, notepad, let’s dig in!
- Ephesians 5:3 “But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints.”
◦ sexual immorality: This general term (Gk. Porneia) covers all sexual sins, including adultery, fornication, homosexuality, etc. Covetousness is a jealous longing for what others possess (Exodus 20:17), and it amounts to idolatry. (Ephesians 5:5; Col. 3:5) [Idolatry is a huge issue and has been throughout all of history since the fall. As Christians God has delivered us from those idols. When we are sucked into idolatry we are slaves. And our masters are cruel. God so many times uses The Exodus as an example of that. How are former masters were so cruel and didn’t treat us good at all, and they were so oppressive. But when we live with God and walk with Him as our Master, we will find that being a slave of the Most High is the most wondrous position we could have. The apostles constantly referred to themselves as slaves to Christ. I pray that I will do the same] It mustn’t even be named among us, we have to have integrity and allow God’s grace to work in and through us so we can be faithful ambassadors to our King. Not even a hint of sexual immorality, covetousness, or impurity.
- Ephesians 5:4 “Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let their be thanksgiving.”
◦ Thanksgiving, in contrast to crude joking and foolish talk, is the positive way to speak, and it also counteracts, covetousness. The way to counteract covetousness is to be thankful for what God has already given us. Lord Help me to see what you give constantly! Thank you Lord for what you’ve given me.
Here is the rest of Ephesians 5, chew on it and let the word take root in your heart.
For you may be sure of this,
that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure,
or who is covetous (that is, an idolator),
has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.
Let no one deceive you with empty words,
for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience.
Therefore do not become partners with them;
for at one time you were darkness,
but now you are light in the Lord.
Walk as children of light
(for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true),
and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord.
Take no Part in the unfruitful works of darkness,
but instead expose them.
For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret.
But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible,
for anything that becomes visible is light.
Therefore it says,
‘Awake, O sleeper,
and arise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.’
Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise,
making the best use of the time,
because the days are evil.
Therefore do not be foolish,
but understand what the will of the Lord is.
And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery,
but be filled with the Spirit,
addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,
singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart,
giving thanks always and for everything
to God the Father
in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,
submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.”