Grace For Your Day August 23

Grace For Your Day

Our passage for this week is an interesting one. Like so many other verses in the Book of Ephesians, it is full of depth and mystery because it says: "Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children" (5:1). Paul tells us to imitate God. He tells us to copy Him in all that we do which is quite a statement. It is quite a command because it is so daunting. It is so intimidating. In fact, I had difficulty wrapping my mind around until I read the following quote from Martyn Lloyd-Jones. In his 7-volume Commentary on Ephesians, he writes:

"Be ye therefore imitators of God," says the Apostle. Become imitators, mimics, of God . . .

But why are we to be imitators of God? Why are we in these respects to be in our daily lives as God is? It is first and foremost because we are God’s children . . .

If we do not understand this we are missing the whole point of the Christian message and we will never understand this appeal for conduct and behavior . . . Being a Christian does not stop at the rebirth, glorious thought that is. We must go beyond that, for what does our rebirth mean? It means rebirth after the pattern and the image of the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. We have already been looking at this in chapter 4: "Put on the new man," Paul says, "which after God is created in righteousness and holiness of the truth."

The Christian is a child of God. He has been adopted into God’s family. He is a partaker of the divine nature. He is born from above, he is born of the Spirit! . . . We are to be imitators of God because we are children of God! God’s people! That is what Christianity means.

As we prepare our hearts to study Ephesians 5:1 this week, this is a good place to ask the question: Do you understand what this passage is saying? Do you understand that, if you have trusted in Jesus, you are a child of God? You are not trying to become a child of God; you are a child of God. You are not trying to earn a place in His household; you already have it. You just need to live like it now.

Do you understand that you are not just born again but you are born again into the image of Christ? Do you understand that God has made you to be like Him? If you do, it should have an effect on you. If you do, it should change the way you live because it should make you imitate God. You should not just imitate other Christians but you should imitate God. You should not just copy your friends or heroes in the faith but you should take it one step further and copy the Lord Himself through the power that He provides. If you are wondering how to do that, please join us this Sunday morning. The service begins at 9:30. Bring your Bibles and come ready to learn from this deep and mysterious verse.

-Jeremy Cagle