Imitators of God
As followers of Jesus, our lives should change. As we ‘grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ’ (2 Peter 3:18), more and more over time, what we think about, desire, say and do should epitomize the character of God and the life of Jesus. High calling? Yes! But that is what God is calling us to do and to be.
Paul implored the believers at Ephesus to live the life to which God had called them.
- Ephesians 4:1 I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called,
Later in the book of Ephesians, Paul told these followers of Jesus just what this call means: be like God and live like Jesus.
- Ephesians 5:1-2 Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. 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.
But Paul is not the only one to give believers this message.
Jesus told us to be like God
- Luke 6:36 Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.
- Matthew 5:48 Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.
Peter and John told us to live like Jesus
- 1 Peter 2:21 For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps:
- 1 John 2:6 He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.
But this is not an act. We aren’t pretending to be something we aren’t. Jesus detested hypocrisy. He wasn’t preoccupied with the rules; He emphasized relationship. When you imitate the Love of God, you will fulfill the Law of God.
- Matthew 23:23 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone.
- Romans 13:10 Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.
This is a metamorphosis!
- Romans 12:2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
We are to put off the old and put on the new.
- Ephesians 4:20-24 But you have not so learned Christ, 21 if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: 22 that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, 23 and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24 and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.
Those who don’t know God must see Him in us. Living in a way that draws others to God is one of the primary responsibilities of ambassadors for Christ.
- Ephesians 5:20 Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God.
But God doesn’t just call us to live like this; He also gives us the desire and ability to do it.
- Philippians 2:13 for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.
Therefore, surrendering to these truths, in obedience to His desires for my life, I pray for:
The Word of God to Be My Foundation
The Love of God to Open My Eyes
The Mercy of God to Purify My Motives
The Grace of God to Inspire My Benevolence
The Wisdom of God to Transform My Thinking
The Forgiveness of God to Impact My Relationships
The Compassion of God to Soften My Heart
The Spirit of God to Enable My Obedience
The Will of God to Guide My Steps
The Power of God to Leverage My Weaknesses
The Humility of God to Destroy My Pride
The Promises of God to Inspire My Hope
The Peace of God to Calm My Fears
The Immutability of God to Steady My Course
The Son of God to Define My Life
In all of this, we must point others to Him.
Don’t See Me
Don’t Rely on Me
Trust in Him
Don’t Commend Me
Surrender to Him
Father, may I surrender to You and Your will be absolute. May Your character and faithfulness, the indwelling presence of Jesus Christ, the power of Your Holy Spirit, the Truth of Your Word, and the faith and gifts You have given me enable me to live as a genuine and effective ambassador for Jesus. I pray that all Your saints embrace the call to be like You and to live like Jesus. May Your truth draw others to salvation in Jesus Christ. For it is in His precious name I pray these things. Amen.