The religous leaders had an agenda. They wanted desperately to catch Jesus speaking blasphemous words, so they might arrest him and hand him over to the authorities. So they asked Him:
"Teacher, we know that You say and teach rightly, and You do not show personal favoritism, but teach the way of God in truth: 22 "Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?" 23 But He perceived their craftiness, and said to them, "Why do you test Me? 24 "Show Me a denarius. Whose image and inscription does it have?" They answered and said, "Caesar's." 25 And He said to them, "Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's." (Luke 20:21-25, NKJ)
Render unto Caesar what is caesar’s – and unto God what is God’s
How did they know what was Caesar’s? It has his imprint on it, and it carried the value that it had been given. How do you know what belongs to God? It has his imprint on it, and it carries the value that he has placed on it. A penny, a $5 or $50 bill does not determine it’s own value. It carries the value it has been pre-determined to carry!
When Paul wrote to the Ephesians, he wanted the church to think about what it means to live their lives in such a way that reflects the value of Christ to them – If you value it – you will live it! We are naturally oriented toward ourselves, our own pleasure, our own comfort. But, a walk that values our salvation, our calling to Christ, is a walk that reflects Him in every area of life!
Be imitators of God as dear children. 2 And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma. 3 But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; 4 neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not be partakers with them. 8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), 10 finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret. 13 But all things that are exposed are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light. 14 Therefore He says: "Awake, you who sleep, Arise from the dead, And Christ will give you light." (Ephesians 5:1-14, NKJ)
As Paul teaches a similar message that Jesus taught, he reveals Three Ways to Reflect the Value that has been placed on you.
One: Be Imitators of God
Imitate means to Follow someone’s example; Mimic. It doesn’t mean to pick up general patterns. It means to copy specific characteristics. Reproduce in you everything that is true of God. You bear his image, so that when people encounter you – they encounter GOD!
Two: Walk in Love
To walk in Love means to exercise unconditional; sacrificial love. There are going to be some people you are going to have to sacrifice for - you are going to have to forgive, to dig down deep to love. You are going to have to bite your tongue, turn the other cheek, exercise some self-control. We must walk in forgiveness. One simply cannot fully love another person while holding onto bitterness and unforgiveness.That’s how we function relationally with other people. It’s first how we function in our relationship with God, and in our response to God. That is the Greatest Commandment...LOVE GOD. LOVE PEOPLE.
It’s about a willing, surrendered, sacrificed heart –That sure smells good to God!
Three: Walk as Children of Light
For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (Ephesians 5:8, NKJ)
Light reveals truth or uncovers what is true. What is Truth? In Hebrew, the word is emeth. It literally means Firmness, constancy, durations, everlasting, something that can be relied upon. In Greek, the word is Aletheia and means to “unhide” or to “hide nothing” – to make visible what is invisible – to make the unseen – SEEN!
Jesus said, In John 14:6: I am the truth, the life, the way – no one comes to the Father except thru me!
Jesus said about himself: “I am the light of the world, and the light was the life of all men.” Do you know what else he said? He said: You are the light of the world. Church: He said: we are the light of the world.
So, here’s the challenge: GO LIGHT YOUR WORLD
Make the invisible visible. Lead and light the way. Take someone by the hand and lead them to Jesus. It’s the most important and most impactful mission you can have. It’s the only mission that has eternal impact. At Clearpoint Church, we want to have an eternal impact. We want you to have an eternal impact. And we will when we nail it down and boldy reflect the value and purpose that has been placed on us by our Heavenly Father!