December 12, 2017

Ten Principles for Christian Service (3)

Matt Recker

Luke 17:7-10

Part 3

In this final article on ten principles for Christian service, let’s first review the first seven points and then I will share the final three.

1. Serve Christ: in a spirit of faith that will result in an increase of faith.
2 Serve Christ: believing it is a high honor.
3. Serve Christ: without expectation of human honor or reward.
4. Serve Christ: understand there will be strenuous days of grueling service.
5. Serve Christ: without looking for the punch clock.
6. Serve Christ: in an awesome variety of ways.
7. Serve Christ: remembering no servant is indispensable.

8. Serve Christ: realizing that no matter how much we do for Him, it is no more than our duty and far less than what He has commanded.

Have we done everything that the Lord has commanded us in a perfect way? I think not! This should keep us humble.

If we are unprofitable servants if we do all our daily duty, what are we if we do less than our daily duty?

“Unprofitable” does not mean that we are “worthless less than nothings”, but that we are servants to whom our Master owes nothing. If we have done what He has commanded, He still does not owe us anything. God will never owe us, but He does good things for us beyond what we deserve because He is good and a stronghold to us. God rewards us and gives to us more than what we are worthy, not because we have earned anything, but because He is gracious.

Job 11:6; God exacteth of thee less than thine iniquity deserveth.

Duty means we have done what we owed. When we do our duty, we are merely paying our debt. Dr. Charles Dunn told me that DUTY is the Desire to be Useful that Transforms You.

Have you loved your neighbor perfectly? Then you have done what is commanded you. Have you loved your wife or remained holy in spirit and body? Then you have done what God has required.

Did you do well this past week? Then do not look back. Put your hand to the plow and ask God for power and strength to do right in the power of His Spirit in the week ahead.

Are you in heaven yet? No, so remember that this life is not a playground but a battleground. Put your sword and helmet on. This life is a great field and we are laborers with God for a great harvest that must be made. Do not come in from the field yet. The day is not done.

9. Serve Christ: avoid extremes and maintaining a balance.

In life, the right way usually runs between two extremes. Balance is a great word. A balanced person avoids extremes. I believe as we meditate and delight in the Lord, He will keep us properly balanced. One extreme is that work and service to Christ is pure drudgery. The other is that we are such great servants, we deserve praise for what we have done.

One extreme is self-congratulation and the other is despondency. One extreme is thinking I have done more than others and I am deserving of honor. The other extreme is a sense of such unworthiness and the thinking that I am incapable of doing anything of value.

We must avoid high thoughts of ourselves and hard thoughts of God. It is very easy for us to over estimate our importance or the significance of our work. When we think too much of ourselves, we will quickly think that we are overworked and underpaid. We will think that we are under-recognized and under compensated and way too overburdened. Christian service is not only for Christ but by the power of Christ working through us.

10. Serve Christ: know at days end there will be grace for all eternity!

At the end of the day the servant was able to eat and drink. What a meal is waiting for us at the end of our day. It is called the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. This will be the most awesome meal and spread of food you will ever taste. Consider Luke 12:37 as we close. Jesus will gird himself as a servant and serve those who are watching and working for Him. This is grace, that Jesus serves those who have served Him.

Do not grow weary in well doing, for in due season we shall reap if we faint not. Meanwhile, the Christian servant must keep his chin up and his knees down. The Christian servant says, it is always too soon to quit. Remember the words of Christ as you serve Him: “So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do.” (Luke 17:10) May you be active in Christian service as the divine power of the indwelling Christ confronts human need through you, a grace-filled believer living for the glory of God.

Matt Recker is the pastor of Heritage Baptist Church in New York City.

Although Proclaim & Defend is the blog of the FBFI, the articles we post are not an expression of the views of the FBFI as a whole, they are the views of the author under whose name they are published. The FBFI speaks either through position statements by its board or through its president. Here at Proclaim & Defend, we publish articles as matters of interest or edification to the wider world of fundamentalist Baptists and any others who might be interested.

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