Tuesday, 11 October 2016
…finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. Ephesians 5:10
This “finding out” what we are to do is connected to the word “walk” of the previous verse. Taken together it says, “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.”
As we walk in the light, we are to find out that which is “acceptable to the Lord.” This is very similar to the statement which Paul uses in Romans 12:2 –
“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”
The same word is used there and in this verse. It comes from the idea of the testing of metals. When a person wants to “find out” the purity of gold, they will take a sample of it and test it. The process of such testing is to determine if there are impurities, and if so, the gold can be refined in order to further purify it. This is to be true with us as well. By finding out what is acceptable to the Lord, we can then apply it to our walk. In so doing, we are being purified.
This transforming process is compared to the standard measure which we have available to us, the word of God. This is what is to be used for the refining of our walk in this life, and it is what will be opened for our judgment when we stand before the Lord. The words “what is acceptable to the Lord” are to be our goal; they are the standard of our testing.
This does not come to us by an inner voice or some type of external injection of the Holy Spirit. Rather, it comes from reading and applying the word of God to our lives. As we learn and comply, we become more and more acceptable to Him.
Life application: A closer walk with the Lord must come about by adherence to God’s word. Without it, we become the arbiters of what is and isn’t acceptable. Stay close to the word, know the word, and live out the word. Allow the Holy Spirit to fill you through obedient conformity to God’s word.
Lord God, You have set a path before us, showing us how to be acceptable to You. It is known as the Holy Bible. In its pages are found all we need in order to be pleasing children, walking in holiness. Help us not to listen to some dubious “inner voice” which is sure to lead us astray. And give us the wisdom to understand that Your Spirit isn’t going to externally mold us, as if we can sit and wait for the transformation. Rather, we need to know Your word, and then to walk in accord with its precepts. In this, we will surely find out and adhere to those things which You approve of. Thank You for this wonderful word. Amen.