Daily Readings and Thought for October 7th. “THAT YOU MAY BE ABLE TO WITHSTAND IN THE EVIL DAY”
Today we read the final 2 chapters of Paul’s letter to the Ephesians. These chapters emphasise the need to “be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us” [5 v.1,2] How did Christ show his love for us? It caused him “to give his life as a ransom ….” [Matt. 20 v.28] We are not asked to do this, but we are asked to make every effort to make our characters more and more like that of Christ!
Let us have fully in mind what we read in Galatians 4 days ago! “my little children, for whom I am again in the anguish of childbirth until Christ is formed in you!” [4 v.19] Paul’s anguish! That was the outcome of his love and this was founded on his love for Christ! What is our love founded on? Surely the same! But how well do we know Christ? This will show in the strength of the foundation our lives have established. Is it rock-like?
Paul then proceeds to describe the opposite! What happens, as happens in our world, when there is no love for Christ! Paul tells them, “sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you … Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking … instead let there be thanksgiving.” [v.3,4]
How much “thanksgiving” do we express – and is also shown by our actions? Now, a question for each of us to answer – from our hearts. To achieve these things we must “take up the whole armour of God” [6 v.13] We note how the parts of this armour are described!
There is one particular purpose – in doing this – “that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.”
Now look at the next 4 verses, they tell us of the weapons we need to develop as fully as we can if we are to effectively “withstand in the evil day”. A major weapon is to have “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” [v.17]. May we all keep our “sword” sharp – and in daily use.