Bro. Caleb Taft
Waking with The Word | Ephesians 5:1
Ephesians 5:1-2 1 Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; Chapter 5 opens with the same idea Paul presented in the beginning of chapter 4, our walk. "Be ye therefore followers of God" To follow someone is to walk after them, to step where they step, move where they move, and we can be assured who we follow will greatly determine where we end up at. Saul followed after the flesh and rebellion; God told Him that rebellion was as the sin of witchcraft. By the end of Saul's life, we find that those seeds of rebellion he followed led him right down to the witch of endors house. In contrast I am reminded also of John the Baptist who followed after Christ: John 1:35-38 35 Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples; 36 And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God! 37 And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. 38 Then Jesus turned, and saw them following..... As John looked upon Jesus as He walked he had to proclaim "Behold the Lamb of God!" His following after the savior drove him proclaim to others what God had revealed to Him. When others heard the proclamation, they began to follow after Christ as well. As Christians our walk shouldn't be a walk in our own path and in our own way, but it should be a following. The more we follow after him and behold him the more we will desire to see others come to the same glorious light that we came to by the enlightening of God's Word and Spirit. How then do we follow God? Christ was there that day and they could follow after him in a physical sense, but for us Christ has ascended, and God is a Spirit, and we have no physical footprints to follow after. We may not have Christ in the flesh, The Living Word, but we do Have Christ in the Scripture, The Written Word. We may not lean our heads on Christ bosom like John the Apostle did and feel the breath of the Savior, but He did not leave us comfortless. We feel the winds of the Holy Ghost blow on our soul and comfort us, we can feel His love, His correction, His presence and even His absence that makes our hearts long after him and search for our beloved like the lady in Song of Solomon search after her beloved until she felt His sweet embrace again. We are at no disadvantage to the very men who walked in the dusty footprints of The Nazarene, we follow those same footprints as we walk through the pages of His Word and obey the nudges of His Spirit. How then do we follow God? We follow his ordained guides, His Scripture and His Spirit. Which is the purpose of our writing today, that we may be lead through the pages of His word by the author, His Spirit. If you plan on following God you will have to become familiar with his guides for this current age, His Word and His Spirit. "As dear children;" is Paul's next inspired line. In this word dear lies a wonderful truth. Dear was translated from the Greek word "agapetos." Before we move on let me say that I am not of the persuasion that one needs to know Greek and Hebrew to understand the Bible. I have complete confidence in the KJV, I think it is beneficial to look at the Greek and Hebrew words in the same way we look at a commentary, as a help and not an authority. With that being said, this word "agapetos" was translated as beloved in the Gospels and was reserved exclusively as God's description of His beloved Son. Matthew, Mark, and Luke record the words of God as He spoke from Heaven "This is my beloved son." It is not until the book of Acts that we see such a high title given to anyone else and then through the church epistles it becomes a common title to the people Paul was addressing. What a high honor to carry the title of a dear son, as a dear daughter. Once a title only reserved for the Lord of Glory but now for all that are in Him. We can bear the title as beloved children because we are in The Beloved. He hath given us the power to become the sons of God! We bear the title of the dear, beloved Savior. How is it that we ,who at one time, walked in the vanity of our minds and the lust of our flesh came to bear such a title? We repented from the things we walked after and We followed after Christ in obeying the Gospel. That first faltering footstep of faith as a 9-year-old boy was met by God's grace and mercy. He pulled me up out of a horrible pit and the miry clay, set my feet upon the solid rock and established my goings! That first step of faith was just that, the first. There has been many since and many more to come, by God's Grace. Because we have been honored with such a high title as "dear children" let us follow after God in the same manner we followed Him in the beginning, by faith. Faith in His Word and Faith in His Will, both will be revealed to us by His Spirit. According to the Riches of His Grace!