Now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light. Ephesians 5:8
At local high school sporting events, Ted was the largest and loudest cheerleader in the stands. Before a degenerative condition took its toll on him, he stood six feet six inches tall and weighed 290 pounds. Ted’s crowd-stirring chants of “Blue!” (the school’s color) and candy-tossing at school events were legendary, earning him the name “Big Blue.”
But Ted’s reputation in his community wasn’t just for cheerleading. Neither was it for the alcohol addiction he experienced as a younger man. No, he will be remembered for his love for God and family, for his generosity and kindness. At a four-hour “home-going service” that celebrated his life, person after person came forward to testify about the vibrant Christlike ways of a man who’d been rescued from darkness by the power of Jesus through the gospel.
In Ephesians 5:8, Paul reminded believers that they “were once darkness” but quickly noted, “but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light.” Such is the call for every believer in Jesus. Children of light, like Ted, have much to offer those engulfed in this world’s darkness. “Fruitless deeds of darkness” are to be avoided (see vv. 3–4, 11). Those in our communities and throughout the world need the brilliant, distinctive witness of those upon whom Jesus has shined (v. 14). How distinctive? As different as light is from darkness.
What are some reasons you hesitate to more intentionally spread Christ’s light in this world? Where are the places around you that need His light?
Father, forgive me for my passivity about being light. Lead me and use me as light in the dark spaces of this world.
In the book of Ephesians, Paul doesn’t mention specific people and situations like he does in other letters. This shows that this letter was likely intended for all believers in Jesus in Asia Minor. However, the book may have been named according to where the letter was first sent.
In Ephesians 5:8–14, Paul refers to all believers in Christ when he explains that before following Him they were in darkness (v. 8). It was a part of their being, not simply a state they were living in. He then explains that living “as children of light” means living in “goodness, righteousness and truth” (vv. 8–9). Respectively, the three original words are practical, showing that believers are to take interest in the well-being of others, to conform to God’s standards, and to follow the truth in Scripture rather than living by the ways of the world.