Paul talks to us here about how our lives should be different when we are believers in The Way than they were before we were saved. Faith not only changes us inside, but grows to be more and more visible as our relationship with God grows deeper. He starts by telling us, “Watch what God does, and then you do it.” Then he says, “You groped your way through that murk once, but no longer. You’re out in the open now. The bright light of Christ makes your way plain.” No more excuses.
|Living in the Dark||Living in the Light|
|Our sins, uttered and committed, grieve God and break His heart (4:29-32).||Imitate God’s love and sacrifice, as shown by Jesus’ examples (5:1-2)|
|Sexual immorality, impurity, greed, idolatry, obscenities, foolish talk, and coarse jokes, even if society approves (5:3-6)||God’s people will inherit the Kingdom of God, so leave behind your focus on the things of this world (5:3-6)|
|Don’t make excuses for these sins or participate in socially-accepted disobedience committed in darkness, or face God’s anger (5:6-9)||Live in the light of Christ for the Holy Spirit lives in you. In His strength you can do what is good, right and true (5:6-9)|
|Many live with the credo, “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.” Their evil intentions will be revealed by God’s light (5:10-14).||Don’t do ungodly things, even in secret. No gossiping either or repeating secrets. Instead, carefully listen to the Spirit and act in such as way as to please God. Christ brings and gives us light to live by (5:10-14).|
|Fools act thoughtlessly, get inebriated or high, and search for opportunities to engage in worldly pleasures (5:15-20).||Look for opportunities to live by the Spirit’s power with careful wisdom, so that God’s light shines through you. The Holy Spirit’s filling will show up in a musical life of praise and thanks (5:15-20).|
What hit me was this thought: “What people think in their minds and hearts eventually comes out of their mouths.” How is my heart? How attentive am I to my relationship with God? Do I listen for His voice? Do I ask God to shine His light into the recesses of my heart and life so I can take an axe to anything that is not of Him? These are questions that I should continue to ask myself as I live my life.
Pray with me. Lord, it is only with your Holy Spirit’s guidance and strength that I can live in a way that reflects Your light. Let me live in a way to sends up a wonderful aroma You in to heaven. Take my life, and let it be a living sacrifice, Lord, to Thee. Amen.
Cynthia Clawson is a woman with a multitude of voices and styles–all of which bring praise and thanksgiving to you.