Summary: Paul tells us how we can imitate God who is our perfect example.
Text: “Therefore be imitators of God as dear children” (Ephesians 5:1).
Have you ever imitated anyone? When I was a child I remember imitating or mimicking my dad while he was driving the car. I would sit beside him and watch his every move. My pretend steering wheel would turn every time the car went around the corner. My right foot would go down on my imaginary break pedal and my left foot on my imaginary clutch pedal every time the car slowed down or stopped. I watched his foot movements and hand movements as he started the car in motion. I imitated him as he shifted gears and checked the rearview mirror.
In my mind, I could drive to any of the nearby towns without missing a turn or curve in the road. I knew where and how to stop, turn, shift gears, park and return safely because I had imitated my dad so many times. I was an imitator. In my mind my dad was a perfect example of what a dad should be.
Most of us probably have played cowboys and Indians. I remember the Roy Rogers gun and holster set I had. This was a real neat six-hooter that shot a round circle of 6 caps. I practiced drawing that gun from the holster just like I imagined Roy did.
As a little fellow, we didn’t have TV in the country, but we did have a radio. I used to listen to the Roy Rogers and Dale Evans radio shows. Since I couldn’t see the action, the voice diction, the music and the shooting brought the action to life in my imagination. Roy was a real hero to me and I wanted to be just like him. He was the good-guy who always came out winning.
As I got older, perhaps matured a little, there were still times I looked up to people and wanted to be just like them. In high school I looked up to my band director. I wanted to be like him. He was about six foot three inches and was from Finland. His music ability was outstanding. His name was Charles Luoma and he had played under the direction of John Philip Sousa.
He played every instrument in the band. I wanted to do the same thing. I had that opportunity, although I was not really good on most of them. I did end up playing the trumpet and the baritone. I liked the baritone because it was the instrument of choice for Mr. Luoma. I imitated him as much as possible, but did not have the years of experience he had. I loved to imitate his manner of directing and would on occasion be given the opportunity to direct. A few years after I graduated from high school, Mr. Luoma died and I lost a wonderful friend and mentor.
As the years passed, there were others I mimicked or imitated, but then I realized I should be imitating one far more important than any other. I now realize that the God who created me knows me and has given me important advice and direction and He is the one whom I should imitate.
Paul reveals in his letter to the Ephesians whom we should imitate. He said, “Therefore be imitators of God as dear children” (Ephesians 5:1).
You might ask yourself, “How can I imitate God because God is holy, He is one, He is eternal, He is just, He is omniscient (that is He knows everything), He is omnipresent (meaning He can be present everywhere at the same time), and He is omnipotent (which is to say He is all powerful)”.
None of us is holy meaning no one compares to God. His Word tells us “There is no one holy like the LORD….there is no Rock like our God” (1 Samuel 2:2). As individuals traveling through our earthly life, we tend to change. We change jobs, friends, views, attitudes when our situations change. When you think about it, a rock is a rock and it never changes. God is our Rock because he is “the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).
In our present state, we have not been around forever. In other words, there was a time when we entered this world through birth. God is different. God is eternal because He has always been or He has always existed. “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty” (Revelation 1:8). God is the beginning and the ending.
Mankind was created in the image of God (Genesis 1:27). He not only created us, but He gave us the breath of life that will keep us going through this earthly life. God blesses us and is very gracious to us, but He is also our judge. His justice is like no other. It is fair and impartial. There is no discrimination.