Imitators of God

Pastors Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne

Publish date: 06/16/2024

Foundation Scripture:

Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children. Ephesians 5:1 KJV


1. A Follower of God.

a. Ephesians 5:1 AMPC –– Therefore be imitators of God [copy Him and follow His example], as well-beloved children [imitate their father].

b. Followers (Greek mimētēs) meaning: a follower or imitator.

c. To mimic the gait (a manner of walking, stepping, or running), speech, accent, and/or manner of life, of another. 

d. To follow and imitate the way another person walks, talks, and lives their life.

e. It means that we are to imitate God as children do their parents.

f. We are to imitate God’s acts, His words, His nature, His character, His ways, and His Spirit.

g. How do we see and learn what God is like?

h. Through His Word and His Spirit.

i. He never acts inconsistently nor does anything out of character nor against His Word.

j. Hebrews 13:8 NKJV –– Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.


2. Seeing the Father Through Jesus.

a. We see the Father through Jesus—all He was and all He did.

b. Jesus said, “If you have seen Me, you have seen the Father” (John 14:9).

c. Nothing Jesus did and said was done of His own accord nor on His own authority. 

d. Jesus only did exactly what His Father had taught Him to do and say (John 8:28).

e. The good works Jesus did, were done to show and reveal to people the Father—how much He loved them and cared for them.

f. John 10:32a AMPC –– Jesus said to them, My Father has enabled Me to do many good deeds. [I have shown many acts of mercy in your presence.] 

g. The Father was the One Who sent Jesus and enabled Him to do His works and show His mercy.

h. John 10:32b (Kenneth S. Wuest) –– Many works I showed you as evidence, beautiful, noble works, from my Father.


3. The Will of the Father.

a. Matthew 7:20 AMPC –– Therefore, you will fully know them by their fruits. 

b. The character of a person is revealed by the fruit of their life.

c. Do you see the fruit of the spirit, or the works of the flesh manifested in and through them?

d. Each of us must take the Word of God personally and submit ourselves to every aspect of it. 

e. We must deal with the issues of the heart and allow the Word of God to change us into His image from the inside out.

f. Matthew 7:21-23 AMPC –– Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father Who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me on that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name and driven out demons in Your name and done many mighty works in Your name? 23 And then I will say to them openly (publicly), I never knew you; depart from Me, you who act wickedly [disregarding My commands].

g. There are many people who want to do Jesus’ works, but who don’t want to follow His example.

h. They talk a good talk, but their life does not reflect the nature and character of God.

i. They take those things from the Word that please them but disregard the things they don’t want to hear or do.


4. Live What You Preach.

a. We must live what we say we believe—we must live what we preach.

b. Paul declared, “For I never shrank or kept back or fell short from declaring to you the whole purpose and plan and counsel of God” (Acts 20:27 AMPC).

c. Paul preached the Word—the whole purpose and plan and counsel of God—and he lived it out in his own life.

d. Paul preached the truth of the Word in season and out of season.

e. Whether it was popular or unpopular; welcomed or rejected.

f. He never tried to tickle their ears or preach so they would like and accept him.

g. He gave it to them straight—he reproved, rebuked and also exhorted and encouraged.

h. He was patient and long-suffering with them and did not quit but continued until he saw the fruit of his labor.

i. 1 Corinthians 9:27KJV –– But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.

j. Paul spoke of how he submitted himself, and his whole being, to the Word and will of God in his own life.

k. So that he did not end up being a castaway or disqualify himself for Heaven in the process of preaching to others.

l. Our priority is to ourselves—to make sure we are right with God and that we remain on His path—before we minister to others.

m. We MUST live what we preach—for the sake of our own souls and for the sake of those who see and follow our example.


5. Follow Godly Example.

a. 1 Corinthians 11:1 KJV –– Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.

b. Paul is saying: Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ.

c. 1 Corinthians 11:1 AMPC –– Pattern yourselves after me [follow my example], as I imitate and follow Christ (the Messiah).

d. Jesus Christ is the One we pattern our lives after.

e. We should be able to see the character of Jesus in and through our spiritual leadership, as they faithfully follow Jesus. 

f. As believers, we are also called to show Jesus to the world through our own lives.

g. Once we are born again, we must renew our minds to the Word of God.

h. It is this application of the Word and the activity of the Holy Spirit that will bring about a godly change in our lives.

i. As long as we live, we will be a work in progress, growing in the grace of God as He works in us.

j. Then, we can be of use to the Kingdom of God—to lead by example as we show others the heart of the Father, and as we do His works.