Walk in a Manner Worthy of the Gospel
by Greg Thomas
The Apostle Paul not only urged believers in his letters to evaluate their own lives, but often did so with the reminder that he would be coming soon to do his own evaluation. No one desires their life to be unduly evaluated by others but we need to remember that the Lord scrutinizes each of us thoroughly. Read Psalm 139 regularly, for it is a reminder that our sovereign Lord is never left in the dark about anything, even our thoughts.
When Paul wrote to the many churches in the New Testament, he repeatedly exhorted them to live in light of the newness of life that they now had by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. In 2 Corinthians 5:17 he told the church at Corinth: “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; old things have passed away; behold new things have come.”
Paul reminded believers that the Holy Spirit was residing in them and then commanded them to “walk by the Spirit.” One’s “walk” points to the acts of a daily life which are to be guided by His Spirit. Paul discusses the “walk” of the believer in the following two verses:
Galatians 5:25: “If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.”
Ephesians 4:1-2: “Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love.”
You get a sense here of Paul’s urgency as he implores the Ephesian believers toward a godly life. Paul lays out the required manner of ministering to one another with a comparison to one’s calling by God. My walk must be worthy of His call to salvation. The necessary humility, gentleness, patience, and tolerance for ministering to one another are possible only through His Spirit.
Paul points out further in his letter to the Colossians that the motivation behind a worthy walk is to be pleasing to the Lord. He makes this point in Colossians 1:9-10 where he says:
For this reason also, since the day we heard of it, we have not ceased to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that you will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects.
As I focus on the heavy price that my Lord paid in taking my sins upon Himself and dwell on the love that He has shown me, my love for Him deepens and so does the obedience from my heart. I desire to please Him more and more for He demonstrated His love toward me, in that while I was yet a sinner, Christ died for me.
It is in consideration of this great sacrifice that Paul challenges the Philippian believers to live in a manner worthy of the marvelous salvation provided in the gospel. He makes this point in Philippians 1:27:
Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or remain absent, I will hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel.
What do others see in my life that reflects the most important characteristic about me, that I belong to the Lord Jesus Christ? Do others see me standing firm for the faith of the gospel? What will be the evaluation of our Lord? Is my life pleasing to Him?
Our desire ought to be to walk in a manner worthy of the gospel of our precious Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.