“Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.”
So yesterday we looked at why Paul had the right to speak into the Ephesian’s life, urging them to live a life worthy of their calling. Today we’re going to talk about what that means!
The Ephesians, and us, were reminded that their salvation could not be earned by them, purchased by them or deserved by them. It was simple available because of God’s GRACE! Yesterday we talked about living a life defined by and full of grace, thus worthy of their call to grace, today we’ll see what that looks like!
Grace generally deals with our relationship with God. But in vs 2, Paul begins taking about our relationship with others. He says “Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.” “ALWAYS” is one of those big, “all inclusive” adverbs that I don’t ALWAYS like, especially when used in criticism. In reality, ALWAYS describes stability and good character and that’s how it’s used here, as the Ephesian Christians are encouraged to ALWAYS be HUMBLE-the ability to correctly assess one’s importance in light of Who God is and in the grand scheme of things, and GENTLE-the ability to be kind and truthful, yet approchable.
How different would the world be if all Christians were both HUMBLE and GENTLE? MUCH different! These 2 traits come from knowing Who God Is and allowing Him to be Who He Is in us!
Furthur, the Ephesian Christians (and us) are told to be patient with each other, “making allowances for each other’s faults”. What? You mean I have faults? Yes, we see with magnification that we ALL have faults, especially as we get to know Jesus! Knowing I have faults is part of being HUMBLE! Realizing that others have faults is part of being GENTLE!
A correct assessment of myself helps me be PATIENT with others! Because of PATIENCE (and GRACE), we’re told to “make allowances “for each others faults”. He doesn’t say to condone, make excuses for or to wink at each others faults, but to make allowances for them. Why? Because of LOVE! We are to love each other with a brotherly love. We’re actually suppose to love each other with a CHRIST kind of love that is willing to lay our lives down for each other, just like Jesus did! In other words, we are asked to EXTEND GRACE, the way we RECIEVED GRACE FROM GOD!
God was not oblivious to the fact that the Ephesians and by default, us have faults or sins! God, in His LOVE for us and His GRACE for us, made the decision to LOOK PAST these faults and see the person we really are and that we’re becoming! God made the decision to LOVE us anyway and extend GRACE to us anyway. Paul’s asking us to do the same for others!
In a different book, Paul wrote, “Love is patient and kind . . .” (I Corinthians 13:4). Peter, another apostle wrote, “Love covers a multitude of sins: (I Peter 4:8). God is asking us to LOVE EACH OTHER here, just like GOD, thru JESUS, LOVES US! (John 13:34, I John 1:23, 4:7-11)
If we recieved grace from God in our relationship to Him (vertical), we should extend grace to others as we love each other (horizontal relationships). (Oh yeah, a vehicle line intersecting a horizontal like makes a CROSS +++++++! That’s how love is defined!)
Think about it!