After the Likeness of God

Walk in a Manner Worthy
Ephesians 4:1-3 ESV

“I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”

As followers of Jesus Christ, we are to be those who are walking according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh. We are to be walking in the light (truth, righteousness) as God is in the light, and we are to not be walking in the darkness while claiming we have fellowship with God.

For, we are to be conducting our lives, in practice, in a manner worthy of (fitting or appropriate to) the calling to which we have been called. And we have been called to holiness and righteousness, to live godly lives pleasing to our Lord, separate (unlike, different) from the world of sin, because we are being conformed to the likeness of Jesus Christ.

And “walking” has to do with how we live our lives day in and day out. It has to do with what we practice, our habits, our normal routines of behavior, our words, our attitudes, and our actions. Are we living our daily lives for the praise and glory of God or for the flesh?

And in our daily routines, we are to be exemplifying humility, gentleness (controlled strength), patience, endurance, and love which prefers what God prefers, which is what is holy, righteous, pure, honest, and faithful. And we are to be unified (in agreement) with the Spirit of God in the bond of peace, but not world peace, but peace with God through surrender to him.

[Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; 1 Jn 1:5-9; Rom 12:1-2; Tit 2:11-14]

Due to Hardness of Hearts
Ephesians 4:17-19 ESV

“Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds. They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity.”

When we believe in Jesus Christ with God-given faith in him, we die with Christ to sin that we might live to Christ and to his righteousness. Our old selves are done away with so that we may walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

So, we are to no longer live in the same way we did before. We are not to do the ungodly things we did before we believed in Jesus. Our lives should have been transformed of the Spirit of God so that we now want to please God with our lives, and we no longer want to live to please the flesh.

Our hearts should not be insensitive to the voice of the Holy Spirit. We should not be putting our hands up and saying “No!” to the Spirit of God when he convicts us of our sins or when he prompts us to resist the devil and to flee from him and to not surrender to temptation to sin.

Our lives should not be given over to greed, sensuality, impurity, sexual immorality, idolatry, worldliness, or any kind of moral filth, not in practice. And we are not to be entertained by any of it, either. Nor should we be giving approval to such behavior in the lives of other believers in Jesus.

The Truth in Jesus Christ
Ephesians 4:20-24 ESV

“But that is not the way you learned Christ! — assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.”

Many people today are learning Christ exactly as is described in these previous verses. For they are being taught that they can believe in Jesus and have heaven guaranteed them but that they don’t have to repent of their sins, or obey the Lord, or submit to him as Lord of their lives.

Not all are going that far as to say they don’t have to turn from their lifestyle of sin and that they don’t have to obey the Lord, but many are. And many others imply it by how they have diluted faith in Jesus Christ to some one-time decision and prayer or confession of Christ with no action required.

They feel they made their decision to believe in Jesus, and now heaven is their eternal destiny, and so how they live doesn’t really matter with regard to where they end up spending eternity, for they believe that has already been settled. But they are deceived, for that is not what Jesus taught.

The truth in Christ Jesus teaches, instead, that we are to put off our old self, our old nature which is given over to pleasing the flesh. For, it belongs to our former manner of life which should not continue to be our present manner of life. For, it is corrupt through deceitful desires.

Jesus said that if anyone would come after him, he must deny self and take up his cross daily (daily die to sin and to self) and follow (obey) him. For, if we hold on to our old lives of living for sin and self, we will lose them for eternity. But if we put our old lives to death, we will have eternal life.

When we die with Christ to sin, we are reborn of the Spirit of God, and we are changed in heart and mind away from living for sin and self to now desiring to please our Lord in all that we do and say. We will still be tempted to sin, but sin will no longer be our master, for Jesus is now our Lord.

But this is not a one-time deal. As Jesus said, and as Paul taught, too, we must die daily to sin and follow our Lord Jesus in obedience. Sin should no longer be what we practice, but righteousness should now be what we practice. We should now be new creatures in Christ Jesus.

Faith in Jesus Christ, because it comes from God, will follow what Jesus Christ taught. Thus, it will repent of sin, obey the Lord, and submit to him as master. The old self will be put away, and now the believer in Jesus will put on the new self which is created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. But this is all done in the strength and power of God.

So, when someone tells you that if you believe in Jesus that heaven is guaranteed you, but they don’t teach this dying to sin and denying self and following our Lord in obedience, then they are lying to you. For, if we continue in deliberate and habitual sin, we will not inherit eternal life.

[Lu 9:23-26; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:7; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; 1 Co 6:9-10; 2 Co 5:10]

He Gives Purpose

An Original Work / June 9, 2012

“Listen to Me when I’m calling to you.
Obey freely My word.
Follow Me in all of My ways.
Do all that I say.
Hear Me gently whisper to you
My will for your life and future.
Give all of your life and heart to
Follow Me always.”

Repent of your sins and worship Jesus.
He’s your Lord and Master.
He died for your sins so you could
Live with Him today.
He has a plan for your life and
He gives purpose and direction.
He gives meaning to your life,
So follow Him today.

“I love you so much I gave My life for
You to walk in My ways,
Living for Me each day as you
Bow to Me and pray.
Witness for Me of your love for Me and
Of My grace and mercy,
How I died to save you of your
Sins now and always.”

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