Don’t Be Like Them
Verse 17 So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking.
Having talked about a couple of things that we need to leave in the past let’s take a slightly broader look at things we need to keep in our lives as we live out our eternal resolutions.
Paul had just finished telling the Christians in Ephesus how they needed to be living as a unified body based on the teachings of the apostles and Scripture. We know that if we are to grow spiritually that we need to be learning to live as God would have us live and that comes from knowing Him and His Word better. Sometimes that learning will come from personal Bible reading but it can also be beneficial to gain teaching through good solid preaching and Bible studies.
These teachings need to be something we not just listen to but take action on. It doesn’t matter how many times we hear preaching about loving others if we don’t make the choice to love those we come into contact with. We have to make the decision to take the steps to obey but that isn’t always the easiest choice. Being a Christian isn’t easy. We have a responsibility to Christ to bear His name well.
This responsibility we have to His name is what should bring us to make these eternal resolutions. We need to be thinking in the long term and not just about ourselves. While most people make new year resolutions merely for personal gains, a Christian should be making goals with others in mind. They should especially be looked at in light of how they reflect Jesus’ name.
So when Paul tells us not to live as the Gentiles do we need to assess what it means to live in opposition to the Lord. This is what we must ask ourselves frequently. If we want to make resolutions that have eternal rewards then we need to be focused on what it means to live for the eternal One. Living for Christ requires willingly obeying His teachings. Willingly obeying by loving our enemies, loving our neighbors and first and foremost loving God with all our hearts, minds, souls and strength. If we want to live in the light with sensitivity to the Holy Spirit, we must listen and obey, knowing that He is the One that will help us keep our resolutions when they are in line with how He desires we live.
Making It Personal
How resolved are you to living as Christ would have you live? What are the things you struggle to obey Him about? What decisions do you need to make today?
Making It Personal Kids
What does it mean to act like Jesus? Are there things that you find it hard to obey Jesus about? Why are those things hard for you?
Father, thank You for giving us ways to learn how You would like us to live. Give us hearts that desire to live like You in all ways. Make Your teachings plain to us. In Jesus’ name, amen.