The Bible says that we are called imitators of God (Eph 5:1), in our behaviours, in our values and in the way that we live. It seams like an unbelievable thought.
So what does it look like to be an imitator of God and is it even possible. 1 John 2:4-6 (msg) says clearly ‘ if someone claims, “I know him well!” but doesn’t keep his commandments, he’s obviously a liar. His life doesn’t match his words. But the one who keeps God’s word is the person in whom we see God’s mature love. This is the only way to be sure we’re in God. Anyone who claims to be intimate with God ought to live the same kind of life Jesus lived.’
I am not sure about you, but this seems like a daunting task to me, it’s one thing to try and copy someone we admire on earth but to live like Jesus is something much bigger. Just think about some of the things Jesus did on earth.
- Jesus walked on water, while most of us stumble often in our spiritual walk.
- Jesus feed 5000 men plus women and children with 2 fish and 5 loaves of bread, many of us fail to feed ourselves daily on the Word of God.
- Jesus raised people from the dead, yet there are many Christians who if being honest would say they feel somewhat spiritual dead themselves.
Do you ever read scripture and then stand back and compare it to your own life? If we claim to be intimate (have a relationship) with God, we ought to live the same kind of life that Jesus lived.’ When we compare Jesus’ life with ours, what do we see in common? Do we see anything in common? How do we live the same kind of life as Jesus.
I speak often to people who have problems in their life, with addiction, depression, relationships, etc and the most important question I ask them is, “How is your relationship with God?” and the answer I commonly get “well I try my best to live the life God wants me to live, but it’s just too hard.”
But what if we were wrong? What if somewhere alone the line we learned some teaching that wasn’t correct? Look what Jesus says in Matthew 11:29-30 ‘Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”’
So where do we start to cross the canyon that separates the way Jesus lived to the way which we live? The first point we are going to consider is ‘LIVING LIKE JESUS PUBLICALLY, STARTS WITH LIVING LIKE JESUS PRIVATELY’.