Imitators of God (Ephesians 5:1) - Radical
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Imitators of God (Ephesians 5:1)

“Therefore be imitators of God as beloved children.”
– Ephesians 5:1

Ephesians 5:1, a simple verse, and significant verse like this command to be an imitator of God. How weighty a command is that? Today for you, for me, to imitate God, to reflect God, to let the character of God be evident in our lives. We could just spend hours right now thinking about what does that mean? The character of God, His love, imitate the love of God toward others today. Imitate the holiness of God.

We are called to imitate God as His children. O Lord, may we be a walking reflection of You out of the overflow of being Your beloved children.

Right after this, in Ephesians chapter five we see, “May sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness not even be named among you.” So to pray that God would make us Holy in every way just as He is Holy, to imitate God in this way. You just think about the fruit of the spirit even, that Galatians five gives us. Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self control, these are all fruits of the character of God, His spirit living in us. So let’s imitate God.

So how do we do that? And I love the second part of this verse. Ephesians 5:1, “Therefore be imitators of God as beloved children.” Oh, this is who you are. This is who I am. A child of God, loved by God. So how do we imitate God? We look to God as our Father. We love God as our Father. So we live to please God our Father. We trust in the grace of God our Father. We fix our eyes, our hearts, our minds on God our Father.

God Designed Us To be Mini Versions Of Himself

I think about my kids, my youngest in particular, my six-year-old, who when people see him, they’re just like, “Oh, that’s a Mini-Me of you. He’s just a reflection of you. He looks like you. His mannerisms are like you.” Why is that? Because he spends a lot of time around me. He came from me. There’s a lot of reasons why he looks like me, because there’s a closeness of relationship with me and this is it. This is what God has designed for us to experience with Him.

Just think about it. God has designed for you to experience relationship with Him like a child with a father. We’re talking God here, who calls you and me His children. Not just calls us as children, He loves us as His children and He’s created us for a close relationship with Him that then just leads to us imitating Him. Oh God, may it be said of us that we are Mini-Mes of you, of your character. That we love like you love, and we care like you care, and we have patience like your patience, and we have kindness like your kindness, and goodness that’s flowing from our lives like your goodness, holiness in our lives like your holiness.

Ephesians 5:1 Prays For God To Help Us Imitate Him

God, please help us to imitate you today. Oh God, if we’re listening to this in the morning, or during the day, we think of the different things we are doing. If we’re listening to this at night we think of the things we will do tomorrow. God, we pray right now that you’d help us to imitate you, that you would cause our lives to be a walking reflection of you out of the overflow of being your beloved children. God, we want to live in this. We want to live as your children today. We want to reflect you as our Father today.

Oh God, cause light to shine from us, that people may see our lives, our good deeds, Matthew 5:16, and glorify you as our Father in heaven. We want to be a reflection of you. Help us. We know that doesn’t happen naturally. That happens supernaturally out of the overflow of your Spirit in us, out of the overflow of this closest relationship that we share with you. So God, may it be said of us today that we were imitators of God as beloved children. Ah, thank you for the privilege of even praying this prayer. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

David Platt serves as a pastor in metro Washington, D.C. He is the founder of Radical.

David received his Ph.D. from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and is the author of Don’t Hold Back, Radical, Follow MeCounter CultureSomething Needs to ChangeBefore You Vote, as well as the multiple volumes of the Christ-Centered Exposition Commentary series.

Along with his wife and children, he lives in the Washington, D.C. metro area.


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