Was a joy to recieve and be challenged as Justin Mote opened Ephesians 4.17 – 5.20 at CU Central on Saturday night. We need to change clothes! It was helpful to see the thread of Paul’s letter stand out as we engaged with this meaty practical passage: All things are going to be united under Christ (ch. 1), including the new one man who makes up the church (ch. 2), which is to declare wisdom of God to the heavenly places (ch. 3), and so to do this the church needs to be united!
We looked at conduct that leads to a united church, and light that emanates from a pure church.
The gospel that was preached to the Ephesians made clear the need for change (4.20), for a fundamental turnaround, and so evangelism must call for a new self. Not like the rent-a-car contract with its miniscule small print!
Conversation afterwards hit on 5.6-10 – and the command to not associate with those who decieve with empty words, for now we are of the light, so need to live like it. And thus, we expose unfruitful works of darkness. I realised that over the last year the significance I place on the local church has grown considerably. When the question of joining a church that you knew dealt in empty words, in the hope you could help it, came up, my natural response was ‘that’s stupidity!’ Surely that would be spiritual suicide? But maybe I could help change it? But if the power and life of the church comes from the preached word, then being part of a lifeless, powerless church would be no spiritual gain, in fact it would have negative effect, such is the importance of the preached word in one’s own life.
Praise God that he transforms us. Praise God that our lives in the light are invitations for others to wake-up.
Clothe up in the gospel dress to see unity; avoid scandal to be a light emanating CU!