“As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received.”
When the epistle to the Ephesians was written Paul actually was a prisoner. But not for any criminal activity; he was a prisoner for the cause of Christ. In other words, Paul had been imprisoned for living out Christ’s calling (vocation and purpose) for his life. As he often does, Paul is using himself as an example of Christian living and then encouraging other believers to follow his lead.
So how does one “live worthy” of Christ’s calling? Perhaps we can get some insight as we consider what the Scripture says elsewhere:
Ps. 1-2 – “Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.”
Eph. 4:17 – “I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking.
Eph. 5:2 – Live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”
Php. 1:27 – “Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Then, whether I come and see you or only hear about you in my absence, I will know that you stand firm in one spirit, contending as one man for the faith of the gospel.”
Col. 1:10-11 – “We pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.
So, as it says in Psalm 1, let the Word of God rather than the ways of ungodly men guide your life and lifestyle. And Eph. 4:17 clearly demands life-change. Let the Holy Spirit reform your attitudes and thought patterns. Eph. 5:2 instructs us to pattern our lives after Christ, and He loved us and gave Himself for us. So, make love your aim. To follow the directive of Php. 1:27, join arm in arm with other believers and stand firm for the Gospel. The Holy Spirit will help you when you do. And above all seek to serve the Lord’s purposes, grow in your knowledge of Him, let Him strengthen you, and be thankful.
--- Pastor Keith Andrews