Monday, April 2, 2012

Obey, Honor, Respect, Serve...Ephesians

Ephesians 6:1-9

This week was all about children obeying and honoring; Fathers being loving and patient, training and instructing; slaves obeying; masters having authority; and serving. 
vs. 1-3 -- Children are told to obey and honor you father and mother.  One thing I noticed in these verses is "the first commandment with a promise".  I'm not entirely sure what that means and I'm not sure why it stood out to me, but it did. Obey means to do what your told.  And honor means to respect and love and live out what your parents have taught you in Christ.  "...that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on earth."

I was sooo blessed to grow up in a loving and amazing home.  I am realizing now as I get older how thankful I am for their discipline and tough love.  I can also see now that they modeled the love of Christ to us through all of their discipline. I am so thankful for the things that my parents have instilled in me. And I am thankful that God chose me to be their daughter. 

vs. 4 -- I find it interesting that this verse starts with "Fathers".  Father's as the head of the household and in most families the as the discipliner, are told not to "exasperate your children".  I think this means to be patient with your children, discipling them in love and not anger.  My commentary says, "Parents should act in love, treating their children as Jesus treats the people He loves."  What a great responsibility parents have.  I assume that this could be overwhelming to a parent but wow, just think of what a great opportunity God has put before parents.

vs. 5-8 -- Paul is telling them to treat those in authority above them with respect, fear and with sincerity of heart.  Sincerity of that.  "JUST AS YOU WOULD OBEY CHRIST"  Wow, that's a lot to think about.  I think that means that they would obey their "masters" in the same way that they are obeying Christ because in obeying their master's they are obeying Christ. 

And to "serve wholeheartedly, AS IF YOU WERE SERVING THE LORD".   Looking at it that way and really letting that sink in, makes it easier to work for a grouchy boss (come on you know we have all had one..ha), or to serve joyfully.  The Message says,"And work with a smile on your face, always keeping in mind that no matter who happens to be giving the orders, you're really serving God."

Ultimately we obey, work and serve, not for men but to glorify Christ.  Which is why we do anything is to glorify Christ.  Do I work as if Christ were my boss?  Do I work hard and with enthusiasm?  Do I serve joyfully and as if I was serving Christ?  Where is my attitude in obeying, honoring, respecting and serving?  Do I do it with "sincerity of heart" and "wholeheartedly"?

vs. 9 -- Those in postions of authority should not take advantage of those they are responsible for or leading.  Those in authority serve the same God that those who are following do.  They should treat others in the same way that Christ treats them.  Showing no favortism.  We are all equal before God.

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