Summary: This sermon shares some basic biblical principles for dealing with people.
Intro to series: “Dealing with People.” Sometimes we say, “Life wouldn’t be so bad if it wasn’t for all the people.” We have to deal with people.
Next week: “Dealing with the Spouse” Controversial passage.
Then: “Dealing with the Kids” Parent/child relationship is vital.
Finally: “Dealing with the Boss” Work relationships. We spend a lot of time at work.
This week: “Some Basics for Dealing with People.”
Read Ephesians 5:1, 2, 21.
Overarching theme: “Walk in love.” Live a life of love. How do we do that?
1. IMITATE CHRIST.
“Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.” Kids imitate their parents in dress, habits, etc. Follow the leader.
Related to walking in love: Pastor Mark Holmes writes, “Since God loves us, this love should be evident in our own lives, expressed in all we do.”
Paul talks about forgiveness in chapter 4. We accept God’s forgiveness, but we won’t forgive others.
Show love to all. Sinners love those who love them. Matthew 5:43f.
2. GIVE all to GOD.
We also imitate Christ in giving everything to God. Christ offered up himself as a sacrifice. Holmes says, “We must be willing to see ourselves as a sacrifice given totally to God.”
John 15:33. Jesus gave himself for us, we should give are all to him. We are to lay down our life for our friend. Our salvation is an expression of God’s love, so we should gladly walk in love ourselves.
Patzia writes, “Love is the essence of God and is to be the main feature of the believer’s walk.” 1 John 4:8: “God is love.”
Love gives to others. Little boy’s sister need a blood transfusion.
3. SUBMIT to OTHERS.
We are to subordinate our desires and wishes to others. Not American thought.
Pride demands our rights, but humble submission seeks the rights of others.
Submission doesn’t have to do with who has authority, but rather how we use the authority that we have. The Son of God washed the dirty feet of his disciples, while they were debating who was the greatest.
Jesus submitted to the cross. Luke 22:42, “Not my will but yours.”
We are to see others in the light of Christ, not in the light of their social status or occupation.
This forms the basis for the next three sections of Ephesians. It deals with marriage, children and work relationships.
Follow the example of Christ.
We now remember this act of love by the receiving of Holy Communion.