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Berni - ceo, Christianityworks

The Argument

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Ephesians 4:31-5:2 Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, and be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you. Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. (NRSV)

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The Argument


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Arguments sometimes are unavoidable. And yet, there comes a point in each argument when you and I can decide to play it differently, when you and I can take a step back and make the next step in love, rather than in anger.

I was listening to a young woman the other day telling a group of us about an argument that she’d had with her husband.

“And you know the really crazy thing?” she said, “We were both saying exactly the same thing. It was just the tone in his voice.”

We all do it – it’s called being in “violent agreement”. We assume, we react, we jump down people’s throats. But what if we became imitators of God? What if we started treating other people the way God treats us?

Ephesians 5:1,2Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. (NRSV)

Now a wise man once told me that whenever you read that word “therefore” in the Bible, you have to ask, what’s the “therefore” there for? What’s it pointing back to? Well, in this case it’s pointing back to the two verses immediately before:

Ephesians 4:31,32 Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, and be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you.

So the next time someone says something that you want to react to, pause, think … what if you reacted with the sort of love that Jesus had for you when He suffered and died for you? What if instead of jumping down their throat, you were prepared to suffer instead?

Be an imitator of God … as a fragrant offering of love to Him.

That’s God’s Word. Fresh … for you … today.


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