To imitate someone means to have someone as a role model. It also is synonymous with mimicking someone. As children of God, He expects us to mimic Him in all His ways.
It may seem impossible to mimic a being as perfect as God, so He sent His son Jesus to lead us on the path to follow. Jesus is the ultimate example of how God expects our lives to be. Hebrews 4:15-16 tells that we do not have a high priest who does not sympathise with our weakness but was at all points tempted yet He did not sin. God knows that we are humans and mimicking Him isn’t something that can be in human power.
The bible also encourages us in Philippians 3:3-4, that we (believers) are the true circumcision. Firstly, the word circumcision has to do with the cutting away of flesh.
We cannot be true imitators of God when we walk in the flesh because God is a spirit and the flesh and the spirit are in enmity according to the bible. Secondly, Phil 3:3-4 also encourages us not to any confidence in the flesh. This is because the flesh will always fail. The Bible says woe to the man who puts his trust in another man. As imitators of God, we must only focus on God and Jesus. We do not come to church for any man, therefore, do not let any man distract you from your worship to God.
2 Corinthians 3:18 also informs that being an imitator of God is a continuous process because we are transformed (to God’s image) from glory to glory. So as Christians we should strive for more in Christ. We never get comfortable in our current level with God. Truth is, in God, there is always the next level.
The ultimate goal of imitating God is to be like Him because He is our father and we have been adopted in His royal family and we must strive to live in a way that will please and uphold His family name. we are also the light of the world so must let our lights shine that all men will our good works and give glory to our father in the heaven
One example of imitating Christ is learning to forgive those who offend us just as God has forgiven us our sins.
Jesus while on earth, studied and knew the word for himself. We cannot imitate a God that we do not know and there is no other way to know God except through His word. The bible says that we must study to show ourselves approved. We have to search the scriptures and get to know the mind of God as individuals. Jesus defeated the devil with the word of God. We need the word of God to be overcomers on earth.
Jesus was humble did not have a defeated mindset. The bible says ‘LET this mind which was in Christ Jesus be in you’. Jesus did not judge anyone and so we must not.
The sermon, Imitators of God – Eph 5:1-2 by Sister Charity Ohia, was delivered on May 20, 2018, on the occasion of the Special Youth Service.