Imitators Of God
Not always easy, but always God’s will
“Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.” Ephesians 5:1-2
In His living, in all things, in words and deeds Jesus imitated the Father.
“Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.” John 8:2
“Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?” John 14:9
The life of Jesus was perfectly bound to the Father in that He chose to do and say nothing of His own accord apart from God’s will and purpose for His life. Now we all would agree that because Jesus was God, indeed the only begotten Son of God, His ability to imitate God was not subject to the same temptations and challenges “normal” people face. For Him it was easy.
We might all think that, but we would be wrong. Jesus at every moment of His life on earth had to wrestle with His human flesh that tended toward self-satisfaction rather than God just like yours and mine
“For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.” Hebrews 4:15
Jesus, as a man, had to lean about life and work through the same struggles and temptations we all face and through them He learned to be obedient to God.
“…though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered.” Hebrews 5:8
Indeed we can say with confidence that Jesus suffered and was tempted in greater measure than any human being that ever lived because He carried the destiny of all mankind on His life, being sent from the Father to die for the sins of the whole world, having no sin of His own.
Among the most difficult points of imitating God, I believe, are those when we are called to literally lay down our lives and when we are commanded to love the wicked, the sinner, the hater, the enemy even when they have done harm to the innocent and weak, when they have abused, brutally tortured and wantonly murdered the helpless, without any regard for the value of life. How do you love somebody like that? But that is the measure of God’s love and we are called to imitate Him in it.
He hates wickedness, and sin and we must hate wickedness and sin likewise. He does not wink at it or dismiss it lightly. But He sees it always through the suffering, blood and death of Jesus.
Make no mistake about it those who reject Him ultimately will die in their sin and spend eternity in hell. This is why it is so vital that we pray for them. God will hear us and will always put His mercy before judgment. Even the Law is subject to His grace and mercy.
“…who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.” Corinthians 3:6
Who’s sin is greater, ours or the one whom we judge to be worse than us?
“…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus…” Romans 3:23-24
The foundation and the force that motivates and moves us toward imitating God at the deepest dimension of our being and the most practical application of His goodness in being a blessing to others is Love. Love is our reason, love is our destination, love is our pathway and our empowerment, Love is the mirror we hold before us to guide us toward looking, speaking and acting more like Jesus.
Be imitators of God.