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A Higher Standard

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Questions:

Being like Christ is the complete opposite of what sinful man wants to be like.
Who is your role model in life? (besides Jesus)
Is Christ your standard in life, or someone/something else? (Reflective)
What does looking like Christ look like?
Do you really want to be like Christ? (Reflective)
Different terms and definitions will be thrown around tonight, but don’t lose sight that we are ultimately talking about selflessness and love.
What is selflessness?
Selflessness is not not being selfish.

Putting Off Your Old Man (4:17-22)

Putting Off Your Old Man (4:17-22)

Darkened Minds (vs. 18)
Spiritually Dead (vs. 18)
No Longer Walk (vs 17)/Put off (vs 22)
In between these commands he points out some characteristics of living as an unbeliever.
hardness of heart
sensuality
greedy
Hardness of Heart (vs. 18)
- the state of being devoid of feeling and mental awareness
Hardness (Gk. Porosis) - the state of being devoid of feeling and mental awareness
taken from word that describes the process by which a fractured bone is reunited by a callus, a callus which is harder than the bone itself
Finally, the word came to mean the loss of all power of sensation; it described something which had become so hardened, so petrified that it had no power to feel at all.
Finally, the word came to mean the loss of all power of sensation; it described something which had become so hardened, so petrified that it had no power to feel at all.
a callus which is harder than the bone itself
The terror of sin is its petrifying effect.
At first, people regard sin with horror. When they sin, remorse and regret enter into their hearts.
At first, people regard sin with horror. When they sin, remorse and regret enter into their hearts. But, if people continue to sin, there comes a time when they lose all sensation and can do the most shameful things without any feeling at all. Their consciences have become petrified.
Barclay, W. (2002). The Letters to the Galatians and Ephesians (p. 175). Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press.
Barclay, W. (2002). The Letters to the Galatians and Ephesians (p. 175). Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press.
Barclay, W. (2002). The Letters to the Galatians and Ephesians (p. 176). Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press.\
Given to Sensuality (vs. 19)
Sensuality (Gk. aselgeia) - the condition of being pleasing or fulfilling to the senses
“If it feels good, do it!”
The great characteristic of aselgeia is this: bad people usually try to hide their sin, but someone with aselgeia in the soul does not care how much public opinion is shocked as long as that person’s personal desires are gratified. Sin can get such a grip of people that they are lost to decency and shame.
The great characteristic of aselgeia is this: bad people usually try to hide their sin, but someone with aselgeia does not care to hide their sin, and aren’t concerned with how much public opinion is shocked at their behavior....as long as that person’s personal desires are gratified. Sin can get such a grip of people that they are lost to decency and shame.
Barclay, W. (2002). The Letters to the Galatians and Ephesians (p. 176). Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press.
Greedy to practice every kind of impurity (vs 19)
Greediness (Gk. pleonexia) - Greeks defined it as ‘arrogant greediness’
Greeks defined as ‘arrogant greediness’
It has been defined as the spirit in which people are always ready to sacrifice others to their own desires. Pleonexia is the irresistible desire to have what we have no right to possess. It might find expression in the theft of material things; it might be evident in the spirit which tramples on other people to get its own way; it might lead to sexual sin.
It has been defined by people who are always ready to sacrifice others to their own desires.
Barclay, W. (2002). The Letters to the Galatians and Ephesians (p. 177). Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press.
It might find expression in the theft of material things
they trample on others for their own personal gain
it might lead to sexual sin
Conclusion
In the world outside the Church, Paul saw three terrible things. He saw human hearts so turned to stone that they were not even aware that they were sinning; he saw people so dominated by sin that all sense of shame was lost; he saw men and women so much at the mercy of their desires that they did not care whose life they injured and whose innocence they destroyed as long as these desires were satisfied.
In the world outside the Church, Paul saw three terrible things. He saw human hearts so turned to stone that they were not even aware that they were sinning; he saw people so dominated by sin that all sense of shame was lost and decency forgotten; he saw men and women so much at the mercy of their desires that they did not care whose life they injured and whose innocence they destroyed as long as these desires were satisfied. These are exactly the sins of the Christless world today, sins that can be seen invading life at every point and stalking the streets of every great city.
Barclay, W. (2002). The Letters to the Galatians and Ephesians (p. 177). Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press.
b. Selfishness is the root and sin always causes a downward spiral! (Baby example)

Putting On the New Self (4:25-5:2)

Putting on (vs. 24)
It's easy to think of being a Christian as simply "not doing," certain things anymore, but the Christian life is not only "putting off," (vs 22) it is "putting on," (vs 24) as well.
Quotes:
“If you don’t have anything nice to say, then don’t say it at all!”
But we are still called to walk...(vs 1) says that we are to walk in a manner worthy of our calling.
(vs. 29) Don’t talk corruption, but speak to build up and to give grace to your hearers
“Don’t treat others the way you wouldn’t want to be treated!” (This was a Greek thought)
- “Do to others as you would have them do to you.”
For example he tells the theif to no longer steal, but on the positive side of things he tells him/her to labor and work, but note that it is not just so that they can provide for themselves so they don't have to steal, it is so that they can "share" with those who are less fortunate than they are. They were thieves because of "laziness and greed," but are to now "labour and share." These are the counter principles to the way they used to live.
Thief (vs 28)
Putting off - No longer steal
Putting on - Labour to share with anyone in need
Opposite principles - "laziness and greed," are to now "labour and share."
Not Salvation
Clarify- This “putting on of the new man” by living in righteousness and holiness is not what makes us a Christian. There is a difference between being “Christian” and being “a Christian.” We are a Christian, because God sent His Son to save us, by grace alone. Being Christian is recognizing that we are saved by grace first, but now we want to “walk in a manner worthy of the calling” (4:1)
Doesn’t this kind of stuff just sound so hard? Where do we get the strength and resolve to live this high of a standard lifestyle.

God’s Love Toward You (vs. 24, 32)

vs22 says to put off the old self and put on the new self which is created after the likeness of God.
One must distinguish between becoming Christian and becoming a Christian, between what are commonly called sanctification and justification.
One must distinguish between becoming Christian and becoming a Christian, between what are commonly called sanctification and justification.
Erickson, R. J. (1995). Ephesians. In Evangelical Commentary on the Bible (Vol. 3, p. 1028). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House.
Erickson, R. J. (1995). Ephesians. In Evangelical Commentary on the Bible (Vol. 3, p. 1028). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House.
Likeness of God (vs 24)
You’ll notice that what we are told to put on is created after the likeness of God…in other words we aren’t asked to hold to a standard that God doesn’t exemplify and live by Himself. Vs 32 echoes the same thing.
We aren’t asked to hold to a standard that God hasn’t exemplified Himself.
Higher Standard -
Not only that but who wants to live in bitterness and anger
Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you - - When we were enemies of God, He sent his Son to save us.
In putting on the new man, and living as a Christian, we become the image-bearers of God!
Bless those who curse you, and pray for those who abuse you - In the climax of people’s rejection of Christ, he prayed this prayer while hanging on the cross, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.” With every cursing that people were yelling at Christ, and with every act of persecution afflicted on Him, Christ was extending the blessing of salvation to them.
So here is where we get the strength to live out these principles:
When you understand that God exemplified these kind of principles toward you in your life, your heart is always desiring to have that same character. It is a response of gratefulness.
How thankful are you that God exemplifies these kind of principles toward you in your life…when you understand that, your heart is always desiring to exemplify that same character to other people. You aren’t just changing your actions for the end means of just being someone different or better…you are preaching Christ in action because you exemplify Him!
And we have the Spirit of God living inside of us empowering us.
Christian Action Summed Up
, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
Love displayed in the Christian life paired with the Gospel message is the most powerful witness to mankind!
Love displayed in the Christian life paired with the Gospel message is the most powerful witness to mankind!
34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
Higher Standard -
Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you - - When we were enemies of God, He sent his Son to save us.
Bless those who curse you, and pray for those who abuse you - In the climax of people’s rejection of Christ, he prayed this prayer while hanging on the cross, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.” With every cursing that people were yelling at Christ, and with every act of persecution afflicted on Him, Christ was extending the blessing of salvation to them.
Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you - - When we were enemies of God, He sent his Son to save us.
Bless those who curse you, and pray for those who abuse you - In the climax of people’s rejection of Christ, he prayed this prayer while hanging on the cross, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.” With every cursing that people were yelling at Christ, and with every act of persecution afflicted on Him, the people were fulfilling the blessing of salvation that was going to be extended to them!
Snort Game
Testimony - Serena
Question of the Week - After we’ve been in heaven for 50 million years, will God create a 2nd earth and so on?
Worship
Testimony - Serena
Game - Snort
Barclay, W. (2002). The Letters to the Galatians and Ephesians (p. 182). Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press.It's easy to think of being a Christian as simply "not doing," certain things anymore, but the Christian life is not only "putting off," (vs 22) it is "putting on," (vs 24) as well.
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