SoulShift: Imitators of God

Ok class… Two new vocabulary words.  There will be a test.

Protrepsis: Conversion literature; where an author tries to convert outsiders to follow a particular path.

Peter tells the crowd... Acts 3:19 (NLT) 19 Now repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away. 20 Then times of refreshment will come from the presence of the Lord…

Ephesians Chapters 1-3 is almost entirely “protrepsis.” It is meant for you to see the power of Jesus and for you to put your faith in him.

There is another word…

Paraenesis: It is a noun; it means instruction or exhortation.  Paraenesis are powerful writings aimed at those who already follow a path, giving them instruction on how to best follow it.  Biblical paraenesis are the passages that address the topics that hit you and me everyday… friends, sex, money, food, paraenesis are teaching passages, educating us on how to be Jesus followers in everyday areas.  The Bible is filled with helpful paraenesis.

This passage is one of those paraenetic passages.  We will not be learning about “how to become and Christian”(That would be protrepsis).  We are going to talk about “how to live christianly,” how to put real life to your real faith.

It will put meat on the bones of our sermon last week, where we saw that believers are constantly “putting off” our old life stuff, like a hard callous heart, and then relentlessly “putting on” new life stuff through renewing our minds.

In order to hear this sermon properly we are going to have the attitude “Lord… If you will teach me your ways I will obey.” 

SoulShift: Imitators of God