How can we know what is our duty as followers of Christ?
One thing that we are ordered to do in Ephesians 5:1 is to follow Christ’s example and walk in love.
What are some specific ways to put this verse into practice?
- Be Sincere : Others can tell when we are not being real. Romans 2:4 explains that demonstrating God’s goodness is one way of sharing genuine love that can lead others unto salvation and repentence. Since God is love, then sharing genuine love lets others experience God’s goodness. Insincere love is always up in the air as to whether it will stick around or just disappear. It makes us feel insecure in comparison to the real thing. Genuine love inspires confidence and allow us have trust.
- Put Others First: Genuine love is not greedy. Practicing genuine love teaches the giver to remain humble and kind. It does not support a “me first” attitude. Loyalty and honor are indicative of genuine love. In practice, genuine love lifts up others instead of self. Selflessness is not a popular characteristic in our world, but the Bible says that the first shall be last and the last first in the kingdom of Heaven.
- Show Unhypocritical Kindness: Listed among the great Christian virtues the command, found in 2 Peter 1:7, “to add brotherly kindness and to brotherly kindness add charity, which is love” includes everyone. “Love of the brethren” means love of Christians as such, as members of the same great family, as God’s adopted children. “Charity” means love of men as such, as creatures made in the likeness of God, as souls for which Christ died. The word for “charity” is emphatically Christian love; not mere natural benevolence.” (https://biblehub.com/commentaries/2_peter/1-7.htm) In Isaiah the Lord, Our Redeemer, speaks of His mercy on us because of loving kindness. The terms love and kindness go hand in hand. Unhypocritical kindness does not withold love but is merciful upon the recipients. Learning to judge less and love more is helpful when practicing genuine love toward others.
- Make It Unconditional: True love is often misrepresented in modern society. The fact is that real love abides. It continues on despite the circumstances of life. True love will reach others when nothing else will because it is constant and firm. As with God, a person who loves does not stop loving when times get tough, disagreements arise, or qualifications are not met. I like to think of it as a free gift given independent of requirements or labor.
- Have a Forgiving Attitude: If we as Christians are indeed willing to put Romans 12: 10-12 into action, we can rejoice in hope instead of harboring hatred, bitterness, and unforgiveness for those that we love. Remembering first that we are so undeserving of such great love prepares us to be willing for forgive others for whatever they do against us. A forgiving attitude is at the heart of genuine Christian love. That is the reason that we are able to celebrate Christmas. Genuine love, such as God had for us so that he gave His only begotten son to die for the redemption of our sins, comes at a cost; but, the rewards of practicing sincere, kind, forgiving love are much greater than man can comprehend.
Let’s put into practice what is our duty as Christians: Immitate Christ in showing sincerity, selflessness, kindness, genuine love, and forgiveness.
Why should be follow Christ’s example? We should love others, because Christ first loved us. Whether you are feeling weak or strong physically, be strong in your faith by trusting in the Lord and following His example.
Walk in love!