God’s Renewing Word of Unity in Christ Jesus
Ephesians 5:1-20: Paul uses the images of darkness and light to contrast a former way of life with new life as God’s people. People who belong to the light are encouraged to live in a way that pleases God.
Living in the Light
1Since you are God’s dear children, you must try to be like him. 2 Your life must be controlled by love, just as Christ loved us and gave his life for us as a sweet-smelling offering and sacrifice that pleases God.
3Since you are God’s people, it is not right that any matters of sexual immorality or indecency or greed should even be mentioned among you. 4Nor is it fitting for you to use language which is obscene, profane, or vulgar. Rather you should give thanks to God. 5You may be sure that no one who is immoral, indecent, or greedy (for greed is a form of idolatry) will ever receive a share in the Kingdom of Christ and of God.
6Do not let anyone deceive you with foolish words; it is because of these very things that God’s anger will come upon those who do not obey him. 7So have nothing at all to do with such people. 8You yourselves used to be in the darkness, but since you have become the Lord’s people, you are in the light. So you must live like people who belong to the light, 9for it is the light that brings a rich harvest of every kind of goodness, righteousness, and truth. 10Try to learn what pleases the Lord. 11Have nothing to do with the worthless things that people do, things that belong to the darkness. Instead, bring them out to the light. ( 12It is really too shameful even to talk about the things they do in secret.) 13And when all things are brought out to the light, then their true nature is clearly revealed; 14for anything that is clearly revealed becomes light. That is why it is said,
“Wake up, sleeper,
and rise from death,
and Christ will shine on you.”
15So be careful how you live. Don’t live like ignorant people, but like wise people. 16 Make good use of every opportunity you have, because these are evil days. 17Don’t be fools, then, but try to find out what the Lord wants you to do.
18Do not get drunk with wine, which will only ruin you; instead, be filled with the Spirit. 19 Speak to one another with the words of psalms, hymns, and sacred songs; sing hymns and psalms to the Lord with praise in your hearts. 20In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, always give thanks for everything to God the Father.
Today’s Key Verse: Ephesians 5:2
Your life must be controlled by love, just as Christ loved us and gave his life for us as a sweet-smelling offering and sacrifice that pleases God.
What are your reactions or thoughts to what Paul says in these verses? Is there anything that you find particularly hard to do? If so, why? What does becoming one of the “Lord’s people” (verse 8) mean to you? What is your understanding of what it means to “live like people who belong to the light” (verse 8)?
Almighty God, I want to live in the light and walk in the pathway of goodness, righteousness, and truth. Thank you for leading me out of darkness and for teaching me how to live in a way that is pleasing to you and reflects your love. Amen.
Ephesians 5:21-33: The apostle Paul discusses the relationship between wives and husbands.