Ephesians 5:1-7
Be Imitators

1 Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; 2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour. 3 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; 4 Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. 6 Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. 7 Be not ye therefore partakers with them.

The first two verses of this chapter are like a conclusion to the previous verses and a contrast to the ones that follow. God’s people are called to remember who they are and why our walk before the people of the world is important. In a “walk worthy of our calling” as sons and daughters of God, there are features that we have that identify us. There are also those things practiced around us that are common to those who are not saved, that should never be done, talked about nor considered even in our inward thoughts.

In view of the fact that God has forgiven us of our sins for Christ’s sake, there should be evidence of our appreciation that cannot be hidden. A follower of God is one who imitates God. That person wants to be like God because they love God. God is love, so those who imitate Him should also walk in love. Love begins as a feeling of appreciation, gratitude and value of others within us. Then it expresses those things in actions and attitudes without. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life.” His inward love found the highest possible way of expression that can be seen and known. This has brought blessing beyond description to millions and millions of people. It is God’s intention for us to walk in love.

One who imitates another will often closely observe and then do the same things. A young child may walk the same way as their parents, do the same things parents do and even speak and use the same words as the parents. Dialects in speech come when one imitates those who are older. Public greetings: whether it be shaking hands, a courteous bow, two hands clasped together or an “embrazzo” are usually learned by imitating those who are older or who lead us. As children of light we should imitate God because God is light as well as love. Light doesn’t mean the contrast between it and darkness but in the context of this chapter, it is moral light contrasted with moral depravity. Because God is also truth, the teaching here includes the fact that God intends us to “walk circumspectly” – to walk in wisdom. This teaching begins with the charge to be “followers of God as dear children.” Be imitators of God in other words, in the same way as children will imitate their earthly parents.

To be a child of His gives a certain sense of dignity to our to our lives and also humbles us. We have come from being aliens and strangers to God and His grace, to the place of adult children in God’s family. Even more than being children is the fact that we are called “dear children,” or beloved children. God has set His love upon us as objects of His affection. This was expressed in that Christ gave Himself as a sacrifice for us. That sweet-savor offering pleased God. No wonder we are should walk in love for God and toward others.

The worthy walk of a Christian also includes walking as children of light. Light in the middle of darkness cannot be ignored by those who are hiding in the dark. Some hide because they know what they are doing is wrong and don’t want to be exposed. Some people, like creatures who know nothing but darkness are uncomfortable in the light and do not know how to act when light shines on them. Any form of immorality is called “fornication” in this context; any thing indecent or any covetous desire that one’s mind is focused on, should not even be talked about. Saints are people set apart for God to imitate Him. These things should never be done by believers and never discussed even as jokes that suggest impurity or with suggestive words. Filthy words, empty conversations that cause foolish laughter is not right – ever.

We need to be able to give God thanks for what we do and listen to. Immoral people do not have a place in God’s kingdom and the only impressions many will ever have of God, will come from those who are imitators of Him. The problem that leads some believers to give other people the wrong understanding of God is because they have a wrong inward concept of God themselves. We should never have a lenient attitude toward sin and should never allow ourselves to listen to or act in any way that is beneath our dignity as the people of God.

Adultery, fornication, homosexuality and all other kinds of sin that feeds off such things, are forbidden in the scriptures. We need to commit ourselves to be imitators of God no matter what others may do or say. Even the changes in the law that condone what God forbids, should not change our attitude toward the unchangeable word of God. A casual attitude toward sex; an acceptance of suggestive language in our speech; a sense of identity by laughing at dirty jokes and gutter talk all are wrong for a child of God.

Believers are solemnly warned against ungodly behavior because it not only pollutes our minds, but opens the way to act on the fantasies that are suggested. We are to walk worthy of our calling, to walk in love toward God and others, and are to walk as children of light. As such we will not be participants in any of these forbidden things, nor will we be guilty of promoting them by even listening to those things that are immoral in nature. We are here in this world as “followers of God.” Let us do just that in every part of our lives. Then perhaps we too will be a sweet savor to others as to what life is supposed to be like.

About this website

GaiusGoff.com was built as a platform to publish Listening & Learning, a devotional walk through the entire Bible. 

Accompanying audio and other updates are also published here.


See more posts from

Related Posts

More Books of the Bible