Representing Christ

Today we will be discussing:

Ephesians 4:17-32

Ephesians 5: 1-2

In today’s text we will be reminded at how we should not live in our sin, but to live in the new life in Christ.  How are the choices we make representing Christ? Let’s take a man who went to his favorite restaurant.  As he enters the staff quickly seats him.  After some time a waiter comes by to take his order.  The guest asks the waiter to seat him elsewhere or to clean the table since it was a bit dirty.  The waiter stated “I will see what I can do, I am very busy let me take your order”.  He didn’t appear to really care much about what the guest wanted or to offer any specialties to him.  Nevertheless he does take his order.  After some thirty minutes the food comes out and is placed on the unclean table, it’s cold and not very appealing.  The guest cannot believe that he is served this food or that he is being ignored by the waiter.  The guest then talks to the waiter and this waiter responds rather rudely, he states “You should be happy to eat at such a fine restaurant, if you don’t like this then you should leave”.  Well the guest did just that, and do you think he ever went back?  See it doesn’t matter how well the restaurant has done in the past, all it takes is a bad waiter to ruin the experience and to never want anything to do with that place again.

We are the Waiter

Let’s keep in mind that just like that waiter represented his restaurant; so we represent Christ in everything we do.  For us there is no punch out time, no lunch breaks, and no vacations.  We are always representing Christ either in a good or bad manner.  When others see you they should see the qualities of Christ.  Christ was a servant. He never treated anyone in a selfish manner.  He never said “I’m God, and you had better watch how you speak to me, now get over here and serve me”.  Yet how do we act when we deal with others?  Are you Christ-like when you are waiting in line and the cashier is slow?  How about when the customer in front of you pulls out coupons and a checkbook?  We are anything but ecstatic about it, especially when we are in a hurry.  How quickly we speak or think in a manner that is unloving toward our neighbor.   How poorly you represent Christ when you lash out at someone, place yourself first, or withhold forgiveness to others. You place yourself above everyone else.  You dare have the uniform of Christ and make Him appear to be a selfish and hateful tyrant!  The very Jesus who denied Himself and took the punishment that you so justly deserve, this is the Jesus you deny to show the world!  You show the world your evil father whom had you enslaved to those sins.  You show the world “I belong to Satan” when you parade around in your selfishness.  Repent!  Realize that you have been bought with a price and you are no longer yourselves. Turn to Christ and take up your cross and follow Him daily.  Repent and be forgiven.

Representing Christ

Let’s read:

Eph. 4:19-24

Paul is talking about no longer walking in our sinful ways.  We should put off the old self and to put on the new self in “the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness”.  Since we belong to Christ we are representing Christ.  Just like that waiter, we too have a uniform that we wear.  Christ has bought you out of slavery from sin, death and the devil. His blood purchased your salvation and freedom from sin.  You now belong to Christ and you represent Him in this world.  When we put off our old self and Christ clothes us in His righteousness we must walk in the Spirit.  What does this mean?  Let’s read:

Eph. 4:32-5:2

Just as Christ died so that your sins would be forgiven, He also died for their sins.  We should imitate Christ’s love and forgive others as we have been forgiven.  We can forgive others and are enabled to love because of what Christ has done for us.  Everyone sins and forgiveness is free to all who repent and place their trust in Christ.   Now that we are clothed in His righteousness and are sanctified by the Spirit we should show Christ to the world.  Walk in peace, patience, and kindness.  Serve instead of being served.  Forgive instead of sinning in your anger.  Lead others to Christ; show them the forgiveness that you have received freely by God’s grace through faith.  Let’s close with this reading from James:

James 1:19-22

Until next time, put on the full armor of God and stand firm on the foundation of Christ!

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