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Sabbath: Living Wisely — 10 Comments

  1. Here is the Ashton "modern" paraphrase for this week's scripture - Eph 5:1-20

    Ok folk, I am going to give you a few guidelines about following God. We need to remind ourselves of how Jesus loved us so much that he sacrificed himself for us. That’s the kind of love we need to have.
    That means that we don’t get involved in dirty talk, promiscuous behaviour, meaningless joking, or careless spending. Rather, we talk positively and be grateful. You know that those who deal loosely with sexual activity, are focused on consumerism, or who spend their time on meaningless TV watching are not really interested in what Christ is offering them in his kingdom.

    Don’t be deceived by those who say you can do what you like; it doesn’t matter. Ultimately there is a consequence. So be careful who you listen to. You used to be like that in your old life of darkness but now you are walking in Jesus’ light and can see where you are going.

    The Spirit is like a tree that produces fruit such as goodness, righteousness, and truth. Don’t have anything to do with the other kind of fruit associated with darkness. Keep away from those things that are done in darkness but rather show what is right by walking in the light. If you do those you will have something of interest to those who are asleep and will be able to reflect light into dark places.

    Live wisely and don’t fool around. Use your time well because if you don’t you may lose your time to evil. Take time to work out what God really wants you to do.

    Don’t get drunk because that leads to foolishness but rather rejoice in the Spirit with music and songs. Even sing them in your heart when you can’t sing out loud. Live a life of thankfulness to God.

    I hope that I inspire some of you to make your own paraphrase.

    ...and if you would like a few minutes of Sabbath viewing my July collection of bird photographs is available by clicking the link below:

    July 2023 Birds

    • Thank you Maurice for your very down-to-earth translations. The plain talking
      really helps me.

      Also I am thankful for your talent in capturing God's winged creatures with your

      Leilani in Phoenix AZ

    • Thank you Maurice for the well articulated insights of Ephesians 5:1-20 , a well guiding summary of what Paul wants us to learn from the current lesson "Living wisely".

  2. Very good paraphrase of Ephesians 5:1-20. I also enjoyed your ornithology show, when pushing my 27inch display up to 3840x2160 resolution--full screen. How beautiful. Your sharp pictures allow me to have a little taste of the glories in heaven prepared for us. Our vision will be so sharp to enjoy what is instore for us, we will spend a thousand years in amazement.

    Let all that is beautiful in our earthly home remind us of the crystal river and green fields, the waving trees and the living fountains, the shining city and the white robed singers, of our heavenly home--that world of beauty which no artist can picture, and no mortal tongue describe. Let your imagination picture the home of the saved and remember that it will be more glorious than your brightest imagination can portray. Heaven 133.3

    Your bird photos help with that imagination. When I share these pictures, I am honored to be able to share some of the demographics of the man who took these pictures. Thanks for sharing with us.

  3. Sabbath day blessings fellow pilgrims, I got up early and decided to look into the Sabbath school lesson. Looking at the memory text I decided to read Eph 5:1-20 from the Message Bible 9not copycatting Maurice).

    Ephesians 5:1–20
    The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language
    Wake Up from Your Sleep

    1–2 Watch what God does, and then you do it, like children who learn proper behavior from their parents. Mostly what God does is love you. Keep company with him and learn a life of love. Observe how Christ loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us. Love like that.

    3–4 Don’t allow love to turn into lust, setting off a downhill slide into sexual promiscuity, filthy practices, or bullying greed. Though some tongues just love the taste of gossip, those who follow Jesus have better uses for language than that. Don’t talk dirty or silly. That kind of talk doesn’t fit our style. Thanksgiving is our dialect.

    5 You can be sure that using people or religion or things just for what you can get out of them—the usual variations on idolatry—will get you nowhere, and certainly nowhere near the kingdom of Christ, the kingdom of God.

    6–7 Don’t let yourselves get taken in by religious smooth talk. God gets furious with people who are full of religious sales talk but want nothing to do with him. Don’t even hang around people like that.

    8–10 You groped your way through that murk once, but no longer. You’re out in the open now. The bright light of Christ makes your way plain. So, no more stumbling around. Get on with it! The good, the right, the true—these are the actions appropriate for daylight hours. Figure out what will please Christ, and then do it.

    11–16 Don’t waste your time on useless work, mere busywork, the barren pursuits of darkness. Expose these things for the sham they are. It’s a scandal when people waste their lives on things they must do in the darkness where no one will see. Rip the cover off those frauds and see how attractive they look in the light of Christ.

    Wake up from your sleep,

    Climb out of your coffins.

    Christ will show you the light!

    So, watch your step. Use your head. Make the most of every chance you get. These are desperate times!

    17 Don’t live carelessly, unthinkingly. Make sure you understand what the Master wants.

    18–20 Don’t drink too much wine. That cheapens your life. Drink the Spirit of God, huge draughts of him. Sing hymns instead of drinking songs! Sing songs from your heart to Christ. Sing praises over everything, any excuse for a song to God the Father in the name of our Master, Jesus Christ.

  4. Eph.5:8-10 – ‘Walk in Light’ - … Walk as children of light, (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), finding out what is acceptable to the Lord.” - James 1:17.

    Eph.5:15-18 – ‘Walk in Wisdom’ - ”See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. ... be filled with the Spirit.”

    For the believer, the above described conduct is only possible as he ‘lives in Christ’. I think it to be extremely important to fully understand what this means. To live in Him - to have life - to be alive, is only possible in and by His Spirit!

    This Spirit by which we conduct our ‘does’ and ‘donts’ in life is the selfsame Spirit which Jesus Christ accepted and which filled Him. We do not have life by the works of the flesh, no matter the quality of its manifestation; no matter how 'good' we are.
    We need to understand that only in and by Him do we have Life - 1 John5:11-13; v.13 “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.”

  5. Living wisely! What challenge! It is possible to 'translate' this to a variety of meanings. Not so good or bad; balance between good and evil, etc. But to live wisely, according to the Word, is to learn the will of Love. Not worldly love, but heavenly Love, the 'real stuff,' not the fake one.


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