OceanSide church of Christ
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LIVING FOR THE MASTER
Victor M. Eskew
A. At our conversion, we ceased being the servants of sin and became the servants of righteousness (Rom. 6:17-18).
But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.
B. The position of servant or slave is not one that any of us easily assume. However, it is the only position that will be rewarded by God (Matt. 20:26-27).
But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; and whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant.
C. As servants of Jesus Christ, we need to render a service that is worthy of the Lord’s approval. What does this service look like?
I. A SINGULAR SERVICE
A. It is a service that is rendered to one, and only one, Master (Matt. 4:10).
Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
a. Without others
2. There are many other lords from which to choose, but God is supposed to be our unaccompanied Master.
B. Some will try to serve two masters, but this is not acceptable to God. In fact, Jesus says that it CANNOT be done (Matt. 6:24).
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
1. In the context, Jesus is dealing with earthly treasures (Matt. 6:19-24).
2. We could try to serve both God and family, but it cannot be done (Matt. 10:37).
3. We would try to serve God and sin (Rom. 6:16).
4. We might seek to serve self and God (Luke 9:23).
5. We might seek pleasure and God (II Tim. 3:4).
II. AN ACTIVE SERVICE
A. Active service involves one in the doing of the will of the master (Luke 12:42-44).
And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion in due season? Blessed is that servant whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath.
B. Two examples:
1. The servant of Abraham (Gen. 24)
2. Jesus (John 8:29)
And he that sent me is with me: and the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.
C. Active service is not determined by the servant. Active service is determined by the master (Luke 6:46).
And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?
D. Once active service is rendered, the servant has nothing of which to boast and nothing for which he should demand thanks (Luke 17:6-10).
But which of you, having a servant plowing and feeding cattle, will say unto him by and by, when he is come from the field, Go and sit down to meat? And will not rather say unto him, Make ready wherewith I may sup, and gird thyself, and serve me, till I have eaten and drunken; and afterward thou shalt eat and drink? Doth he thank that servant because he did the things that were commanded him? I trow not. So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do.
III. A REVERENT SERVICE
A. Hebrews 12:28
Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.
a. Strong (127): (through the idea of downcast eyes;) bashfulness, …modesty towards God, awe
b. Thayer: a sense of shame or honor, modesty, bashfulness, reverence…respect
2. Godly fear
a. Strong (2124): properly caution, that is, (religiously) reverence (piety)
b. Thayer: reverence, veneration, godly fear, piety
B. Reverence begins with an attitude of heart. It involves how one views his master. How do you view God and His Son Jesus Christ?
1. First considerations:
a. Are they real? Do they exist?
b. Are they close to you? Or, are they distant?
c. Do you view them as an active force in your life?
d. Do you honestly have feelings for them? Affection? Love?
e. NOTE: A “no” answer to any of these questions will diminish your respect and fear of them.
2. Secondary considerations:
a. Do others exist who are comparable to them?
b. Are you on the same level as God?
c. Do you have as much say in your life as God does?
d. NOTE: A “yes” answer to any of these questions will cause you to have less respect for God.
3. Final considerations:
a. Is God all-powerful?
b. Is God holy?
c. Is God all-wise?
d. Is God a God of love?
e. Is God a God of wrath?
f. NOTE: A “no” answer to any one of these questions will indicate that you do not know God, and, thus, cannot respect Him fully.
C. Without fear for God, you cannot bring any acceptable service to Him.
1. Fear motivates me to obey (Deut. 13:4).
2. Fear causes me to obey in all things (Deut. 6:2).
3. Fear makes me desire to do my best (II Cor. 7:1).
4. Fear moves me to serve others (Eph. 5:21).
D. Deuteronomy 10:12
And now, Israel, what doth the Lord thy God require of thee, but to fear the Lord thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul.
IV. A CHRIST-LIKE SERVICE
A. Jesus is referred to as a servant.
1. Isaiah prophesied of the suffering servant of God (Isa. 52:13; 53:11).
He shall see the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.
2. Paul reveals that Jesus gave up heaven’s splendor to become a slave (Phil. 2:7).
But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men.
B. Jesus’ service was manifested in two powerful examples.
1. The most menial tasks among men (John 13:4-5)
He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. After that he poureth water into a basin, and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded.
2. The most difficult tasks before God.
a. Matthew 26:39
And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt.
b. Philippians 2:8
And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
C. Our service needs to be like that of Jesus.
1. There is no service that is too lowly for us.
2. There is not service that is too difficult for us.
V. AN UNFALTERING SERVICE
A. As a servant our service to our Master is not shoddy. We do not serve one day and fail to serve another.
B. Our service is constant, faithful, and true.
1. John 8:31
Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed.
2. I Corinthians 15:58
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.
3. Colossians 1:23
If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister.
4. Hebrews 3:14
For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast unto the end.
A. Jesus was a servant. To be like Him, we must serve (John 13:14-15).
If I then, your Lord and Master have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.
B. If we truly serve our Lord, we will inherit the joys of eternal life (Matt. 25:21).
His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.