Week 5, Friday Ephesians

Ephesians 5:11-14 – In the World, Not of the World

By Pastor Paul Georgulis

11 Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, expose them. 12 It is shameful even to talk about the things that ungodly people do in secret. 13 But their evil intentions will be exposed when the light shines on them, 14 for the light makes everything visible. This is why it is said, “Awake, O sleeper, rise up from the dead, and Christ will give you light.” – Ephesians 5:11-14 (New Living Translation)

In this passage, the Apostle Paul continues his thoughts on how followers of Jesus need to walk in the light of Jesus and please God. He is making it clear that living apart from the darkness (i.e., sin) does not mean we need to withdraw completely from the world. After all, Jesus – in John 17:14-19 – referred to both Himself and His followers as “not of the world” but in the world. In this passage in John’s Gospel, Jesus states, “My prayer is not that you (God) take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one” (verse 15). This tells us that we are in a world filled with sin and darkness, but that we have a protection from it, and that protection comes from God – via the Holy Spirit – in the form of a relationship with Jesus.

It is important for Jesus’ followers to avoid the “worthless deeds of evil and darkness” (i.e., anything that results in sin), but Paul – in today’s Ephesians passage – takes this one step further and states that we are to also expose these things. We are to prove them fruitless, definitely by our conduct, and not so much by private or public scolding. Unfortunately, some Christians focus more on the scolding and the publically calling out of others who live lifestyles with which they disagree, which makes others view all Christians as judgmental.  

My encouragement to you – and to myself – is to continue walking in the light of Jesus, realizing that we live in a world in need of the hope that only Jesus can provide. When we walk in the light of Jesus, we are lighting up the darkness and sharing the love and hope of Jesus with those who desperately need it.


Father God, thank you for allowing us to go from darkness to light – from a life of sin and separation from you, to a life that is lit up by your glory, grace, and goodness. Thank you for showing us a better way, and for providing us hope. Thank you also for allowing us to play a part in lighting up this dark world so that others can come into relationship with you.

In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen!