Today we are starting the third week of our Hope is Here Bible study. This study of Ephesians was originally developed for my church, The Father’s House, as a compliment to the Hope is Here message series this August. Check out http://www.tfhny.org for message videos and more information.
Day 11 – Walking in Light and Love
We have all heard the expressions “walk the walk” and “talk the talk.” We love it when our friends and neighbors live by these adages. Conversely, we get really frustrated when those around us don’t live by these principles. Whether it is in the context of relationships, our work environment, our families, or in our spiritual lives, we all want to be people who “walk the walk,” don’t we?
In today’s passage, Paul confronts this reality head on. He starts with a really high standard of expectation. He says in the first verse of Ephesians 5 that we should “be imitators of God, as beloved children.” The other day, while on a walk with my daughters, I got a cramp in my leg and stopped to stretch. Immediately, my eldest daughter stopped and stretched her leg in the exact same way. Paul is encouraging us in today’s passage to, just like my daughter, seek to pattern our way of living after the way God shows us how to live.
Imagine what this world would be like if those of us who choose to follow Jesus began to emulate and imitate the way God acts. As you read today’s verses, consider how we become better neighbors as we learn to “walk the walk” for which God has designed us!
READ – Ephesians 5:1-10 (ESV)
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.
REFLECT – Take a moment to answer the following questions in a journal or the notes app on your phone:
- Question 1: What does it mean to “walk in love?” (hint: see verse 2)
- Question 2: What is the difference between walking in love and walking in light?
RESPOND – Consider the neighbors in your life, the people with whom you have influence. Identify one “neighbor” and commit to something you can do to “walk in love” or “walk as children of light” in your relationship with this person.
Share your thoughts below.