Verse of the Day Devotion: Ephesians 4:32
“Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.” – Ephesians 4:32
This last verse in chapter four of Ephesians is extremely critical when it comes to not grieving the Holy Spirit, because this is critical in displaying how we are to treat others. Verses 26 through 31 deal with what we are not to do. We are not to sin in our anger, steal from others, speak unwholesome words, as well as being bitter, slanderous, and filled with malice. Paul ends this chapter by giving several positive things we need always to endeavor to do.
We are to be kind and tender-hearted to each other. We are to be courteous and polite to all we meet and interact with. True Christianity does not make us rough, crabby, or sour. Neither does it make its followers violate the proper rules of social contact. Our goal should be to make others happy by being kind to others. There is nothing in Christianity that speaks of being foul tempered, rude, repulsive or in anyway negative. First of all, why would anyone want us around if we are? All we do is damage possibilities to minister to them in their lives. And if we are interacting with an unbeliever, there is always the possibility of destroying the chance to lead them to Christ. Also, we are not to hold a grudge against anyone. Paul in his letter to the Colossians says it this way. “So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity.” Colossians 3:12-14.
God has called us to be compassionate to all people, just as God was compassionate toward us. In the book of Romans we read, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Romans 3:23. We all have sinned, there is no one, except Christ Himself who has been or is perfect. We all have wronged God. However, what did God do? He sent His son into the world to pay the penalty for our sins. He paid the price we could not pay. And through the death of His Son on the Cross, we have forgiveness. All we have to do is accept it by accepting the work done on the cross and giving our lives to Him. And we need to forgive all those who have wronged us, just as He has offered forgiveness to us because we wronged Him.
It is important that we show the same love God showed us to all others we come across. What better picture of love can we show to everyone we meet. We may be surprised just how incredible our lives will become as we imitate Christ in the love He shared to this world.
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.