Imitators of God
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Therefore, be imitators of God as dearly loved children and live in love, just as Christ also loved us and gave himself for us, a sacrificial and fragrant offering to God. (Ephesians 5:1-2 NET)
Growing up, my two younger brothers frequently copied me in what felt like every aspect of my life. From what I liked, how I talked, what sports I played, and sometimes even down to my favorite movies, video games, music, and hobbies; it drove me crazy! Now that we have grown up, they each have their own distinct personalities and styles, and I actually enjoy when we have similar interests and preferences.
But unlike the younger me, God does not get frustrated when we live and act like Him. Rather, He calls us to imitate Him like we are His children! This is a daunting task, but it is encouraging to know that we have a physical example to follow in our “older brother,” Jesus. And since we have been made holy through Him, Jesus is not ashamed to call us His brothers and sisters (Hebrews 2:11).
Practically, what does imitating God look like in our lives? If we continue in Ephesians 5, we can find a few answers. Verses 8-10 declare: For you were at one time darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live like children of light—for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness, and truth—trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord (Ephesians 5:11). We are called to live in the light and illuminate the world around us by exhibiting the qualities of goodness, righteousness, and truth, which then exposes the darkness.
With this in mind, therefore consider carefully how you live—not as unwise but as wise, taking advantage of every opportunity, because the days are evil (Ephesians 5:15-16). We now know we are called to be light and live wisely in this world and this is not a command to heed sluggishly. Remember, the days are evil. Thus, there is an urgency to this calling to imitate Christ. One does not have to look far to see that evil is flourishing around us, and the only way to combat it is by taking every opportunity to expose the darkness through the light of the Gospel of Jesus! So, brothers and sisters, let us urgently and intentionally live a life of wisdom and light in close imitation of our brother and savior, Jesus.
Father God, thank You for loving us and giving us an example to follow in Your Son, Jesus. This week, give us the wisdom and strength to imitate You and be a light to our families and communities. Show us ways that we are falling short of Your calling and give us a continual heart of repentance. Remind us of the urgency of the Gospel and the need the world has for You! In Your name, we pray. Amen.
Scripture quoted by permission. Quotations designated (NET) are from the NET Bible®️ copyright ©️1996, 2019 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. https://netbible.com/ All rights reserved
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