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Summary: In our scripture, we have the command given, but also the example of the Lord. Before we step out the cost is made clear.

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FOLLOWERS OF GOD

Ephesians 5:1-2

I. THE COMMAND

II. THE COMPARISON

III. THE COST

FOLLOWERS OF GOD

Ephesians 5:1-2

1 Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children 2 and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. [NIV]

1. Be imitators of God (copy Him and follow His example), as well-beloved children (imitate their father). 2 And walk in love, (esteeming and delighting in one another) as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us, a slain offering and sacrifice to God (for you, so that it became) a sweet fragrance. [Amp]

1 Watch what God does, and then you do it, like children who learn proper behaviour from their parents. 2 Mostly what God does is love you. Keep company with him and learn a life of love. Observe how Christ loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us. Love like that. [Message]

One of our problems, when we read the scriptures, is that we do not always recognise what it is saying. Yes, we read the words, and know what each word means, but fail to grasp what the real message is. Here in these two verses we have very clear instructions – not an optional extra, but a command.

I. THE COMMAND

Be imitators of God (copy Him and follow His example),

1) FOLLOW GOD

a. HE MUST BE BEFORE US

Matthew 6:33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. [NLT]

b. WE MUST OBEY HIS VOICE

John 2:5 Mary said to the servants, "Do whatever Jesus tells you to do." [CEV]

2) AS DEAR CHILDREN

as dearly loved children

a. HE IS OUR FATHER

Matthew 6:9 Pray then like this - Our Heavenly Father, may your name be honoured; [Philips]

b. WE ARE HIS CHILDREN

Romans 8:16 The Spirit Himself testifies together with our own spirit, assuring us that we are children of God. [Amp]

Ephesians 6:1 Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord, for this is the right thing to do.

3) WALK IN LOVE

live a life of love

a. LOVE TOWARDS GOD

Deuteronomy 6:5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your mind and heart and with your entire being and with all your might. [Amp]

b. LOVE TOWARDS OUR FELLOW CHRISTIANS

John 15:12 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. [NLT]

1John 4:11 Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

II. THE COMPARISON

just as Christ loved us

1) AS CHRIST LOVED

John 13:1 Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love. [NIV]

John 13:34 "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.

2) AS CHRIST GAVE

I John 3:16 We understand what love is when we realize that Christ gave his life for us. That means we must give our lives for other believers. [God’s Word]

I John 3:1 How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!

III. THE COST

and gave himself up for us


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