A life beyond description

Sunday service, Erlo Stegen, 21 Oct 2018

Ephesians 5:15-17

15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,

16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.

We need to understand this because we live in difficult times. We don’t know the future – the secret things belong to the Lord. And even on a small scale we can’t predict what will happen tomorrow.

How should we live in times like these? These times are great opportunities to the children of God. Our text gives us clear direction for the days to come:

Firstly, be very careful how you live, not as unwise but as wise. To be careful means to live accurately or precisely. The King James version uses the word circumspectly. It is like walking on a high mountain path. Be careful that you don’t take a wrong step lest you plunge down and die.

Sometimes we live too fast, speak and react and answer too fast, our words being hasty and ill timed. The answer lies in the words of the psalmist, “Be still and know that I am God” (Ps 46:10). “Redeem the time. Make the most of every opportunity because the days are evil.” (Redeem means to buy back.) Why? “Because the days are evil.”

Paul wrote the words while chained to guards in a Roman jail, soon to be beheaded. Yet in the midst of all this, Paul redeemed the time.

When we see evil advancing in the world, keep in mind what Jesus said, “Let not your heart be troubled”, and no matter what happens today, the promises of God will still be true tomorrow.

Ex 15:2, “Because the Lord is my strength and my song, He has become my salvation.”
Deut 31:6, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you. He will never leave or forsake you.”
1Sam 2:2, “There is no rock like our God.”
2Kings 6:16, “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.”
Ps 23:1, “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.”
Ps 46:1, “God is our refuge and strength. An ever present help in trouble.”
Ps 103:12, “As far as the East is from the West, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.”
Micah 7:18, “Who is a God like to you, that pardons iniquity, and passes by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage.”
Rom 8:31, “If God is for us, who can be against us.”
Heb 13:5, “Never will I leave you. Never will I forsake you.”
1John 4:4, “Greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world.”
Rev 22:20, “He who testifies to these things says, ‘yes I am coming soon. Amen. Come Lord Jesus.’”
1Cor 15:58, “Therefore my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labour in the Lord is not in vain.”

If we live according to what we have read this morning from God’s Word, we will be more than conquerors. Not just conquerors – but something more.

One can’t express in words what a Christian’s life is like if these truths are a reality in his life. That is what our lives should be like – every moment, every day. If we grasp these truths and promises, there is no word to express how wonderful it is to be a Christian – the beauty and wonderfulness and glory of such a life. When people look at you, they should say, “There is no word that can describe such glory, such power that is in this Christian’s life.”

If this is not true of your life, you are not bringing glory to God, but are a disgrace in the Kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ and you should repent in dust and ashes. People must be able to see this life in you. Otherwise don’t call yourself a Christian. Christ paid the price that you should be able to live this life. Cry to God to change you so that every moment and every day of your life will be like this to His glory.


German translation

French translation