23
October
2014

EPHESIANS 5:2-6 IMITATE GOD BY WALKING IN LOVE

Ephesians 5:2 And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma. 3 But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; 4 neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any 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.

 

1.         Walk in Love Because You are Beloved (highly valued by) of God v1

Sonship is the motive and the means of imitating God

Look at verse 1 now, it's a command, be imitators of God, it's not a suggestion, it's a command.

This verse explains how we are to imitate God, namely, by loving. The measure and model of our love should be Christ's love for us.

Godlikeness is godliness; godliness is godlikeness.

First of all the depth of your love is indicated by how much you forgive. Now think about it. Do you hold a grudge against somebody in your house? It isn't their problem that's your problem. Your inability to forgive belies your love, and I say to you if this is characteristic of your life you're not a Christian, because if you don't have love you're not God's child. Think about it.

Secondly the depth of your love is indicated by how much you know you've been forgiven.

2.     Walk in Love Because You were Bought at a great price v2

3.     Walk in Love Because You are a saint (holy, set-apart by God) v3

Christian Love Hates Immorality

Where God establishes true love, the world comes along and establishes the phony, the counterfeit.

·       Walking in Love Means avoiding immorality …or sexual immorality (lust of the flesh (sexual) and the lust of the eyes (covetousness))

"'Immorality' (RSV) and sexual perversion of almost every kind might be included under the [Greek] word porneia, translated fornication in NKJV; it involves all that works against the life-long union of one man and one woman within the sanctity of the marriage bond.

Love is both positive and negative: “Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good” (Romans 12:9). Christian love is demonstrated by acts of sacrifice, to God and to men. Christian love never expresses itself in immorality.

·       Walking in Love Means avoiding impurity (sins of the tongue) or sensual talk v4

Paul proceeded from immorality to vulgarity

Clean up your life, clean up your talk.

·       Walking in Love Means giving Thanks v4

God's love is unselfish and faithful and the world's love is faithless and selfish.

4.     Walk in Love Because You are a King and are part of the Kingdom v5

From the time you were converted there's going to be a change. Because salvation is based on repentance. If you ever learned anything when you were saved you learned that. Titus 2:11 listen to this, "For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men." Now when you got salvation it says this, "Teaching us," did you know your salvation teaches you something? It teaches you "denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present age."

v6 there are some people who want to deceive, there are people who want to deceive by selling a counterfeit kind of love, and the world's counterfeit love involves fornication and adultery and covetousness and uncleanness and all of that stuff. But we are not to buy the counterfeit, if we're true Christians our lives will be not characterized by the counterfeit but real love.

This is the punishment now. They're not going to enter the Kingdom." don't you let anybody tell you, you can do this and be a Christian, don't you let anybody tell you, you can live like this and God will forgive you, don't you let anybody tell you you're going to be all right, you're going to get in the Kingdom, it'll be okay you made a decision, you did your religious thing, it's all right to live like this. Don't let anybody deceive you with those empty words, they're empty, they're meaningless, they're useless. "For because of these very things," what things? Fornication, uncleanness, covetousness, filthiness, foolish talk and coarse jesting, "the wrath of God comes on the sons of disobedience." Do you see? These are the very things for which God damns people to hell. Don't let anybody deceive you. These are not characteristics of children of God, they are characteristics of children of disobedience. Do you see the contrast? Verse 6 ends with the children of disobedience, verse 1 began with the dear children of God. There's a difference.

Lessons:

  1. We avoid immorality because it is not love, and because it satisfies our physical desires at the expense of others.
  2. Let us leave this text with a clearer grasp of what Christian love is all about. It is not about self-gratification, but about self-sacrifice and the glory of God