But I knew I was teaching and so was prepared. Actually, all I had to do was review my preparation for last week, when we were able to get through only a fraction of the lesson. I was able to do this in a short time last night and this morning, and was ready to finish teaching Ephesians 5:1-20.
My study has shown me that this is an amazing passage of scripture. Paul packed so much into these few words. It is mostly a series of commands, of things not to do and to do, along with a few reasons why and a few consequences for disobedience. I chose to focus on the positive commands, saving the negative ones in reserve in case the normally talkative class clammed up. But they didn't. After we read through the verses, I asked them to go through the verses and pick out the positive commands, adjusting the language slightly if needed to put it in the form of a command. Here's what they came up with, which was the same thing I came up with. The first two were the ones we discussed in detail last week.
- Be imitators of God
- Live a life of love
- There should be thanksgiving
- Live as children of light
- Find out what pleases the Lord
- Expose the fruitless deeds of darkness
- Be very careful how you live
- Live as wise [people]
- Make the most of every opportunity
- Understand what the Lord's will is
- Be filled with the spirit
- Speak to one another with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs
- Sing and make music in your heart to God
- Always give thanks to God for everything
That's a good list. We decided that several of these would be an hour's study each, so focused our discussion on the ninth and fourteenth. Somehow the discussion found its way to dealing with Christian attitudes while driving. It seems we get to this point often, which shows what's on peoples' minds.
Next week I should be off from teaching, and get to sit and listen. My co-teacher will get to teach the husbands and wives section of Ephesians 5. You would almost think I manipulated things to avoid that.