Don’t let the cheapening of the phrase, “What Would Jesus Do?” take your eyes away from the reality and truth of that statement. We should live and measure our lives by seeking to imitate Jesus Christ who was perfectly pleasing to the Father.
Excerpt taken from, “The End of Boasting (Part 3)”, listen to the full series on SermonAudio.
Brethren, it is not wrong. You know, it's become a cliche saying: What would Christ do? Oh, don't let the overuse and the cheapening of that phrase take you away from that reality. Measure your life that way. Would Christ do this? Listen, if you're doing something in your house; if you're doing something with the TV, if you're doing something with the computer, if you do something with music, if you do something with food, if you do something with sex, if you do something with any aspect of your life that you would not want Jesus to walk in right then, what does that tell you? The way you learn Christ is to look at Him. He went about doing good. It's to seek to imitate so that if Christ came up alongside, He would say, "well done!" Not "get thee behind me, Satan!" Or something like that. That's what He says, yes, even to some of His disciples when they're not doing what they ought to be doing or they're not thinking the way they ought to be thinking. Brethren, conforming our life to this. Or how about Ephesians 4:22? "Put off your old self which belongs to your former manner of life corrupt through deceitful desires, and be renewed in the spirit of your minds. Put on the new self created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness." And notice how he develops - notice what this looks like in real life. Verse 25: "Put away falsehood." Don't lie. Don't even give the impression of lying. You young people, you swear to your own hurt. Keep your word. Be honest. Be people of integrity. You borrow something? Give it back. You break something? Pay for it. Be honorable. Don't be irresponsible. We live in a generation where we've got irresponsible parents raising children to be irresponsible; not putting good ethics, good morality, good living, good life, responsibility. It's not there. The examples aren't there. Be honest. Be upright. "Let each one speak the truth with his neighbor. We're members one of another. Be angry and do not sin. Do not let the sun go down on your anger." You see, these things have to do with how we live. "Give no opportunity to the devil." The thief. Yes, he should no longer steal. But he should work, so that he can give. You see, that's honorable in the sight of the Lord. That's good works. It's not just, well, I don't do that anymore. I don't steal anymore. So? What's that? What do ye more than others? It's not Christian just not to steal. It's Christian; it's the workmanship of God when you stop stealing and you work. Lost people work too, but the real difference is there's a motive to be able to meet the needs of those who have needs. Look at v. 29. "Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths." Brethren, no corruption. Brethren, I'm floored that we have people in this church who will try to vindicate movies and music with corrupt language. That's not good works. That's bad works. That's not good. That's not pure. Remember what it says here. It says that we should walk - look at 5:8. "Walk as children of light." The fruit of light. Here's the good works. Good works. Fruit. They're the same. It's found in all that is good and right and true. "And try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord." Brethren, that's it. Try to discern. Live your life examining the Person of Christ. Learning of Christ. That's how you discern what's pleasing to Him. You know how I know that? Because Jesus is there various times and the Father says to Him those exact words. Well pleased. Oh, you want to know what a pleasing life looks like? As much as your life reflects Christ. Walk as children of light. Brethren, no corrupt language, no corrupt talk, no evil talk. Ephesians 5:1 "Be imitators of God." You look at the Son. You look at the Father. Be imitators as beloved children. "Walk in love as Christ loved us." Christ is the example. See how He loved. See how He poured out His life. See how He sacrificed. You live that way. Brethren, do you not know this about yourselves? God has designed you for this very thing. God has not just designed you to exist. God has not just designed you to go to work everyday and come home. God has designed you for good works. Brethren, as He is being creative and He's fashioning us, let your own mind live in the light of that creativity. Be creative in doing good. Let us think as a church - I love it; I see it all the time. Somebody says, Oh, I want to start a reading program for kids on the east side. I want to start schooling some of them. I want to bring women in from the jail. I want to go door-to-door. I want to go and help down in Monterey. Or I want to go off to Lebanon. Or there's things happening in Nepal. I love that. Let's just be creative. Let's let our minds go in feeding and clothing and taking in the stranger and doing the good and pouring out and loving like Christ loved. Brethren, this is what we are the creation of God for. Are we going to try to live as much like the world as possible? Try to live like what you were created to be: The new man. Righteousness. Holiness. The image of God. The way you learn Christ. Learn Christ. Be in those Gospels. And don't just read them to say, well, there, read my chapter for the day. Check it off. No! Read it to see Christ. Read it to learn of Christ. And what you learn that day in your devotions, make a mental note, I'm going to try to reflect that today. Lord, help me, by the power of Your Spirit, make me like that. Sanctify me by this Word, this truth, that I just read. Holy Spirit, You say when I behold the glory of the Lord, I'm transformed by You, glory to glory. Lord, do that in my life. Make me like Him more today. That is the beauty of God's artwork here. And there's coming that day; those sons of God are going to be revealed. We're going to be like Christ. Just look around. I see your faces. We're going to look at each other - many of us - and it's going to be: wow! Look what you are! And no boasting. Thank You, Lord. What is this! What glorious objects we have become! I say it again. I ask the question again. Brothers and sisters, do you know who you are? This is what you are. Many of you have heard Paul Washer say, if you could see yourself the way you're going to be in a glorified state, you would feel compelled to fall down and worship. That is not likely an overstatement. God is fashioning you into something, you know, it's to put on display His manifold wisdom before all the principalities and the powers. Do you know who you are?