Review from last week from Ephesian 5:8-13
- First, We are now light and delivered from the darkness
- We are children of light so walk in the light
- God is creating His Son’s body in the world among darkness and not in heaven among angels
- Our light is manifested in the Fruit of the Spirit
- Our assignment is to discover what is pleasing to God our Father in heaven
- We spoke of how we are to live in the darkness and be His light
- The light of God is meant to be manifested as a corporate body, not as independent and individual lights NKJV
- In us is the nature of the one who is the LIGHT OF THE WORLD, CHRIST JESUS OUR LORD
Therefore He says: “Awake, you who sleep, Arise from the dead, And Christ will give you light.”
Walk-in Wisdom See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another in the fear of God.
Paul supports the views he shared about our being “light in a dark world” with verses from Isaiah 26:19 and 61:1. These are “Messianic Verses” that highlight Christ who is God’s light to humanity. Jesus is the light bearer and the light imparter. It is Christ who gives us light!
For this reason, Paul instructs us to “WALK CIRCUMSPECTLY.” Definition: Careful to consider all circumstances and possible consequences: PRUDENT IE “diplomacy required a circumspect response” or they are circumspect in all their business dealings. (Merriam-Webster Dictionary).
Paul uses strong language in making his point. “Walk in wisdom . . . not as fools.” I am sorry to say that in my many years of ministry, I have seen numbers of people who claim to be “Christian” yet, walk as fools and not wise as Paul admonishes us here. The range of foolishness is from “personal character, marriage relationship, parenting, financial responsibility, and so much more.” Part of being “children of light” encompasses “WISDOM.” Consider what Solomon counsels in Proverbs 1 “To know wisdom and instruction, To perceive the words of understanding, To receive the instruction of wisdom, justice, judgment, and equity” . . . verse 7 “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction.” (NKJV).
Paul helps us to understand, that part of “wisdom” is “redeeming the time.” How careful are we concerning the time we have been allotted? Do we waste our time on nothingness or wisely think about “time investment.” I say investment; because how we spend our time will determine how productive we become.
On a personal note, regarding my time investment many years ago. As a young man, I would always take notes of sermons and teachings I was sitting under. I would study those notes by personally looking up passages of scripture, do word studies, and meditate on what was taught. I also would share with others what I was learning. I did not realize it at the time, but God used that investment of my time to produce a solid “biblical understanding” which enabled me to discern error from truth and provide a healthy knowledge of God’s Word for my future preparation in the Ephesian 4:11 gifts given by Jesus to His body. A quote from Charles Studd that I heard many years ago has greater meaning to me in my latter years, it is this: “Only one life ’twill soon be past. Only what’s done for Christ will last.”
Paul goes on to say, “Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.” It is easy to find our self being absorbed into the culture of the day that is accepting cultural norms rather than biblical values. I am not sure how many Christians are caught up in this, but I know that it is many. Maybe, the root of the problem is that many believers never really got free from the world and its thinking. I find that one of the greatest issues of the church community today is the issue of MIXTURE, mixing the world’s system with church community life. The Bible does not deal with this subject in the “context of the church,” at least in the way we understand church today. The Bible deals with this subject of the mixture by contrasting “the kingdom of darkness with the Kingdom of God.” I am sure, this is a mouth full and for some, it may be hard to understand and or receive.
In verse 17, Paul states “Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.” Help me, Jesus! As His dear children, we have as a priority to learn the will of our Lord. When we keep the “Fruit of the Spirit” in mind, we will know the will of the Lord. Note Paul’s contrast of “drunk” and be “filled with the Spirit.” When drunk with wine, it leads to dissipation and dissipated living. It can be that a descent into drunkenness and sexual dissipation” also can lead to the squandering of money, energy, or resources.
Paul’s admonition is to be “filled with the Spirit.” Even though we received the Spirit when we were born of the Spirit, we leak easily. Our need is to be “continually” filled with the Holy Spirit. In verse 19, Paul tells us how this is done: “speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord.” Worship is the key to helping us have a “spirit-filled life.” Along with worship, is learning “to give thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another in the fear of God.” (see Philippians 2:3-9).
Paul is laying out the lifestyle of the Spirit-filled believer, worship, encouragement, creating melody in your heart before God, always giving Him thanks for all things in the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ.
These areas do not just happen. It requires commitment on our part, that is, a disciplined lifestyle, purposely cutting off those things that distract us from the Lord’s presence and His joy. We must purposely focus our attention on the kingdom of God and His righteousness.
Next week we will begin to consider how the marriage relationship and family life is the great testimony to the world of the picture of the intimate relationship with our Lord that Paul calls, a great mystery,” speaking concerning Christ and the church.
Ephesians 5:22-6:4 deals with the “New Creation Family.” Not trying to fix “Adams” family, but a redeemed family being created by the Spirit through our Lord Jesus Christ who “ever lives to make intercession for His new creation man and women and their children.