Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Worthy Living?

I can't begin to guess how long I have known about all the "ones" of unity in Christ Paul mentions in Ephesians 4.  They truly are the foundation upon which all unity can, and must, come for Christians.  However, as I was preparing for last Sunday's sermon on Eph.4:1-6, the part that really gave me pause - that made me think the most and fill me with fear, was his introductory charge.  That first verse is super-loaded with power, passion, and promise.
First he said, "As a prisoner for the Lord."  Literally, "Remember who I am and why I'm where I am! Then listen to me because I have earned your undivided attention!"  How can you not pay attention when consider who is talking?
Then he cried, "I urge you."  It is a plea, a personal scream of passion for all who read it to not treat what he is about to say lightly.  Bottom line - this is extremely important stuff to Paul!
Then, it's the bomb-shell!  He said, "live a life worthy of the calling you have received."  I've never felt worthy about anything in my life!  I'm a sinner, I deserve death, and here he is calling on me to live a worthy life!  The word "worthy" literally means "bringing  up the other beam of the scales".  It is not a call to be perfect or sinless because that's not going to happen.  It's a call for balance in our life.  It's a call for consistency.  Be the the person we profess to be.  Live the confession we made so it's not just talk.  But mostly, if we truly are the "called out" of God, it must show in how we treat one another.  The prelude to keeping unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace is "bearing with one another in love."  Love is always the secret to peace!  In fact, I think Paul is saying that our calling is reflected in our love for one another!  John said because God loved us we ought to love one another.  It is a love for love proposition, and it is the key to unity, growth, and maturing in Christ.  Living a worthy life is living a loving life.

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