Ephesians 5:1-16 Walk In Love, Walk In Light

by | Jun 19, 2023 | Ephesians, New Testament

I. Live As A Child Of God Vs. 1, 2

A. Dear Children

1. Even when correcting these Christians, Paul reminds them that they are “dear children”.
2. Dear– beloved, esteemed, favorite, worthy of love.
3. When God corrects, instructs, rebukes, discipline…we are still “dear children”.
4. Hebrews 12:5, 6 “My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; 6 For whom the Lord loves He chastens and scourges every son whom He receives.”

B. Imitate God

1. NLT- “Follow God’s example in everything you do, because you are his dear children.”
2. Children usually grow to resemble their parents in looks & mannerisms. (See 4:24)
3. We imitate God by walking in love. “God is love.” (1 John 4:8, 16)
4. Since we are His children, and He has created “according to God”, it follows that we would continue to into having lives that increasingly look like Jesus.

5. What does love look like? The Bible says to look to Jesus as an example of what love is.
6. Jesus’ love was manifested in that He gave Himself for us.

a. He gave Himself as an offering and a sacrifice.
b. It was a sweet-smelling aroma to the Father.
c. The Old Testament worshipper offered animals for his sins. Innocent blood was shed.

i. It was costly to the worshipper of God.
ii. As the sacrificial animal was consumed by fire, it was sweet smelling to God.
iii. Sweet smelling because love for God prompted sacrifice of the worshipper.
iv. Love for God was manifested by denying self and giving, not by gratifying self and taking.

7. In an even greater way, Jesus loved us, and gave Himself as a sacrifice for our sins.
8. The sacrifice was an act of love by the Father and the Son.

a. An act of love and of self-denial. (John 3:16)
b. Done for the sake of others. Done for the blessing, life, and godliness of others.

II. The Opposite Of Walking In Love

A. The Idea Of What is “Fitting For The Saints” V. 3

1. “Fitting”- to stand out, be conspicuous, be noticeable
2. NIV- But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality…”
3. ESV- “…must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints.”
4. Literally- There should be no reason to ever have to address these things.

B. Things That Are Unfitting V. 3, 4

1. Fornication-porneia sex outside of marriage, homosexuality, lesbianism, bestiality, incest.
2. Uncleanness-akatharsia opposite of kathairō: to cleanse of filth and impurity, morally.
3. Covetousness-greedy desire to have more-in this case, coveting moral impurity.
4. Filthiness-obscenity.
5. Foolish talkingmōrologia– from which we get the word “moron”; logia: words.
6. Course jesting-vulgar, indecent, coarse mocking, obscenely abusive.
7. Instead, giving of thanks. Not just being thankful, but actually thanking God.
8. NOTE- The sins listed above are unloving, & driven by self-gratification.
9. NOTE- People do these things to satisfy self. Deceitful desires are blinding.
10. If one pursues these sins, they are acting unlovingly. These are selfish sins (See 4:22)

III. Sons Of Disobedience & Children Of Light

A. Sons Of Disobedience Vs. 5, 6

1. They are those who continue living in the sins that Paul has mentioned.
2. There is no godly sorrow, no repentance, no pursuit of God, no regeneration.
3. They are not born again, but still in their sins. They reject God.
4. Disobedience is the ruling characterization of their lives.
5. They will not inherit the Kingdom of God, but the wrath of God comes upon them.
6. Paul implies that they may seek to convince others that these sins are acceptable.
7. Paul warns the Ephesians not to be deceived into thinking these sins are acceptable.
8. NOTE- remember that this spiritual battle is a battle for truth.

a. The unbeliever grows corrupted through deceitful lusts.
b. Satan is called a Liar, and called one who deceives.
c. We can allow Satan to deceive us, others to deceive us, and we can deceive ourselves by embracing deceitful lusts that bring moral and spiritual corruption into our hearts.

B. Children Of Light Vs. 7-16

1. V. 7-Christians have a choice of whether they will imitate God and walk in love, or not.
2. V. 8 Their former and present condition:

a. Not, “You were in darkness, but “You were darkness” (Compare with 5:6)

i. Their former nature was disobedience and darkness.
ii. The Christian’s nature is changed from darkness to light.

b. Now they were light. That was why they were to walk in light. New nature.

3. V. 9-Paul describes the Christian life as fruitful, meaning that as the Christian chooses to walk in light and love, that God will bring forth the fruit of the Spirit.

a. Goodness, righteousness and truth are all loving and unselfish.
b. To do goodness, righteousness, and truth is to imitate God.

4. V. 10-Finding out– proving, testing, examining to prove, discern.

a. As when an assayer tests a mineral to determine its value.
b. A Christians must determine the value of his choices.
c. That value will be seen. Eventually, everyone will know if we made a good choice.

5. V. 11-Those works may be pleasurable for a season, but they are unfruitful.

a. Expose them– Not the people, but the sinfulness of those actions. Arouse conscience.

6. V. 12– It’s a shameful thing to even talk about. Those behaviors are shameful.

7. V. 13– The thing that determines the rightness of an action or attitude is God’s light.

a. You may have to convince someone of the wrongness of something.
b. Ultimately, it will be seen that God’s light (Word) rightly spoke about that issue.
c. They needed God’s light to show them that they were wrong.

8. V. 14– Paul quotes from an unknown source here. Possibly an early Christian hymn.

a. He is exhorting these Christians to awake from their spiritually dark slumber.
b. These Believers were, in some cases, still living as Unbelievers.
c. They were not finding out and proving what pleased the Lord.
d. They were not walking according to their new nature.
e. They needed to wake up from their spiritual slumber and have fresh spiritual awareness.
f. They needed a fresh dose of light so that they could see that they were in darkness.
g. David Guzik– Remember that this exhortation to awake comes to Christians. A Christian may be asleep and not know it. If you are asleep, you probably do not know it. As soon as you become aware of your sleep, it is evidence that you are now awake.

9. Vs. 15, 16– A spiritually sleeping man has no capacity to be careful; he wastes his life.