Tag Archives: service

Humanity is Vanity

It never ceases to amaze me how much of our family dysfunction has its roots with the first family in the garden of Eden. Adam and Eve were the first human parents ever, and some of the choices made by that first family have left a lasting imprint on all of our lives since they made them. I’d like to illustrate in today’s post one of the aspects of “human nature” that seems to trace its roots to the first two sons of Adam and Eve by going to a Psalm written by King David

Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee: verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity. Selah. (Ps. 39:5, KJV)

The meaning of the word selah is a bit of a mystery. Some think it’s just inserted over 70 times in the Psalms to give musical instructions, or to indicate a pause in the music. Others think it has a deeper meaning related to the root word that it comes from, and that it means to pause to evaluate something and figure its real worth.

So if we pause to more fully evaluate this phrase, “Every man, at his best state is altogether vanity,” what can we draw from it’s deeper meaning?

“Adam” is “Abel”

The word “man” is translated from the Hebrew word adam (Strong’s #120), and is a generic term for humanity that is very closely related to the proper name of the first man “Adam” (Strong’s #121). So every member of mankind or humanity (ladies are included) at his or her “best state” — when we are at the very peak of our physical, political, social, and intellectual power and ability on this earth — is wholly and completely vanity!

The Hebrew word for “vanity” is what really peaked my interest in this verse, because the Hebrew word is hebel (Strong’s #1892). It is pronounced “abel,” and if you look up the proper name Abel (Strong’s #1893) found in Gen 4:2 in Strong’s Dictionary, it simply says, “the same as H1892: hebel, Abel, the son of Adam.

Thus, we have our title for today — Adam/Humanity is Abel/Vanity.

A “Lesser” Son

In Genesis 4:1, it tells us “Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, and said, ‘I have acquired a man from the Lord.'” I’ve heard several ministers over the years speak about what Eve meant by this, but Matt Henry sums it up this way …

“Many suppose that Eve had a conceit that this son was the promised seed (of Gen. 3:15), and that therefore she thus triumphed in him, as her words may be read, I have gotten a man, the Lord, God-man. If so, she was wretchedly mistaken, as Samuel, when he said, Surely the Lord’s anointed is before me, 1Sam. 16:6. When children are born, who can foresee what they will prove? He that was thought to be a man, the Lord, or at least a man from the Lord, and for his service as priest of the family, became an enemy to the Lord

In the next verse in Genesis, Eve “bore again, this time his brother Abel. Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.” Matthew Henry has this to say about Abel’s name.

“Abel signifies vanity. When she thought she had obtained the promised seed in Cain, she was so taken up with that possession that another son was as vanity to her.”

So, the first family was as dysfunctional as any since, with a highly favored son … and another who bore the name “vanity.” That never turns out well. We all know the story of Cain and Abel, and can perhaps identify with some of the human emotion, and the rivalry between them as they presented their offerings to God, who looked with favor upon the offering of the “lesser” son.

Excellent Offerings

So all of the sons and daughters of Adam — humanity — carry about this stigma of Abel — vanity — in our physical nature, and we often see evidence of it in scripture in the lives of Biblical characters. Solomon wrote a whole book on the vanity of life, and came to the conclusion that there could be only one resolution to the human problem.

 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every work into judgment, including every secret thing, whether good or evil. (Ecc. 12:13-14)

Even though his family didn’t seem to think much of him, Abel knew this truth which Solomon speaks of. Abel had caught a vision of life that the rest of his family to that point was unable to see.

By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks. (Heb. 11:4)

I don’t get the impression here that Abel thought Cain was the promised seed. His focus was on God and his example, which pleased God, does still speak, especially to us today who have knowledge of the true promised Seed (Gal. 3:16), and to all who wish to offer to God a “more excellent sacrifice.” It comes down to a simple choice for all of us. Will I live the way of Cain, or will I live the way of Abel?

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. (Rom. 12:)

No matter how vain life might seem at times, we can all follow the example of Abel, and offer a better sacrifice as we follow the true Seed toward the Kingdom of God. If we follow God, our lives need not be wholly lived in vain no matter how little other people may value us. We have a high value in God’s eyes, and He notices the good that we are doing for Him.

By One Offering

By One Offering | BaptismForLife.wordpress.comAs we rapidly approach the end of another calendar year, we see some annual trends among radio and TV evangelists. I listen to several different ministries on the radio, who preach messages that I can learn a few things from, but this time of year, they all seem to have one thing in common … all put out an appeal for year-end special offerings that will fuel their own evangelical efforts for the coming year.

Now, I have no desire to find fault with any of them. All seem to be striving to serve God and man in ways that seem to be in accord with the principals of scripture. And all of us are familiar with the many commands of God to give tithes and offerings to the Lord, and to be generous with the poor and widows and orphans. Each of us has a primary fiduciary responsibility over our tithes and offerings, to make sure as much as we are able that they really do fund godly works.

Our Blessings

We all are aware of the fact that it takes money to do virtually anything in this world … and churches of any size have financial obligations that must be met. What I would like to add to our fund of knowledge today is more of a global perspective on one of the commands about giving.

Three times a year all your males shall appear before the Lord your God in the place which He chooses: at the Feast of Unleavened Bread, at the Feast of Weeks, and at the Feast of Tabernacles; and they shall not appear before the Lord empty-handed. Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the Lord your God which He has given you. (Deut. 16:16-17)

Here we see that God also has seasons of the year where He wants His people to come before Him with special offerings. Today, let’s focus on the phrase at the end of vs. 17 which instructs everyone to “give as he is able, according to the blessing of the Lord your God which He has given you.”

We live in a world today with a population of 7 1/4 billion people (next spring, we will surpass 8 billion), and I personally believe God has called-out-ones representing every strata of world population. One-half of all these people live on less than $2.50 (U.S. dollars) a day. 80% live on less than $10.00 a day. Statistics vary a little, but the median income for working Americans is close to 10 times that much money. The point is,  I and most of my readers are a very blessed people in the material and physical realms, and our greatest blessings aren’t even physical or material.

Spiritual Offerings

For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified. (Heb. 10:14)

I would say the offering of Jesus Christ increases significantly the “blessing of the Lord your God which He has given you.” It was by far the most effective offering of all time, and it had nothing to do with money. Romans 12:1 admonishes us to follow this example and  “present your bodies a living sacrifice.” When we sacrifice our time and resources to serve others, as the people on the King’s right hand did in Matthew 25:34-40, Christ looks upon each of these acts as a personal offering to Him.

We are indeed approaching the end of yet another calendar year, and we are all called to be a self-evaluating and self-judging people. Materially, we all give what we are able to the churches, and charities of our choice, but there are many other types of offerings that mean just as much to God as financial ones.

What I’d like to leave you with today is just a personal question that I’m asking myself right now. This question is based on the statistics we’ve seen, on the example of Christ, on the word of God, and on blessing of the Lord my God which has given me. My question is, “What should my body of offerings and sacrifices look like for the coming year in material, physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual sacrifices and offerings for the body of Christ?”

I Am Among You As One Who Serves, part 4

It is interesting to me to observe the flow of the book of Hebrews. I’d like to spend most of my time here in this fourth and final part of the “I Am Among You As One Who Serves” series in an overview of the book of Hebrews with the focus on how Jesus, the Christ of God, is among us today as One who serves, primarily in the office of High Priest.

Words of Faith

Hebrews begins with a very basic, simple truth of a change in the way God has chosen to minister to mankind, and speak to mankind.

God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds (Heb. 1:1-2)

Jude 1:3 calls these words spoken “the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.” We can see evidence of this delivery in Jesus’ prayer to the Father in John 17. Here, He says that He gave His Father’s words to disciples (John 17:8), and taught them how to preserve it for all generations to follow (John 17:17-20). And they did that job, sharing Christ’s words in person with everyone they could, and recording the New Testament writings for generations to come.

Jesus said, “The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life” (John 6:63). Not long ago, we completed a series of posts entitled, “The Interactive Book.” The word of God is intended to be used as an interactive tool, and is written so that the meaning deepens with life experience, trials, maturity, and the exercise of living faith.

For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.
Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Heb. 4:12-16)

With Christ living inside of you, helping you, and serving your true needs, the whole Bible-package is interactive. He has power over all flesh, and lives in us, and we are linked together by common experience in the flesh, and by the daily advice that we glean from His Word.

High Priest

As we just read in Hebrews 4, Christ is intimately involved as One who serves among the called out ones … and most prominently here in Hebrews in the role of High Priest.

Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession, Christ Jesus. who was faithful to Him who appointed Him, as Moses also was faithful in all His house. For this One has been counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as He who built the house has more honor than the house. For every house is built by someone, but He who built all things is God. And Moses indeed was faithful in all His house as a servant, for a testimony of those things which would be spoken afterward, but Christ as a Son over His own house, whose house we are if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end. (Heb 3:1-6)

An apostle is one sent by God with a message, and we’ve already discussed Jesus Christ’s communication of the words of the Father to mankind. He is also called the High Priest of our confession. This great High Priest is the One who has been and continues to build His house, and we are that house, as it says here and in other places like Matthew 16:18 and 1 Peter 2:5. The house that He is building is His church, and His body, and the Father appointed Him over it as its Head and as One who serves (Eph. 1:22).

Now this is the main point of the things we are saying: We have such a High Priest, who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, a Minister of the sanctuary and of the true tabernacle which the Lord erected, and not man. For every high priest is appointed to offer both gifts and sacrifices. Therefore it is necessary that this One also have something to offer. For if He were on earth, He would not be a priest, since there are priests who offer the gifts according to the law; who serve the copy and shadow of the heavenly things, as Moses was divinely instructed when he was about to make the tabernacle. For He said, “See that you make all things according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.”[a] But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises. (Heb. 8:1-6)

It is important that we remember who’s house we are a part of – “the true tabernacle which the Lord erected” (pitched, set up, built, fixed) – one that is not built by man but by Christ, the High Priest, and the minister, as it calls Him here, of the sanctuary. The word sanctuary – in the Greek hagion (G39) – as used here refers to the immediate presence of God and His throne where Christ conducts His ministry on our behalf, as one who serves.

Building His Church

And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God, from that time waiting till His enemies are made His footstool. For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified.
But the Holy Spirit also witnesses to us; for after He had said before, “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them,” (Heb. 10:11-16)

See all that Christ is doing for us, ministering to our needs from “at the right hand of God,” in His Father’s presence for us? I said earlier that the word of God was an interactive tool for both He and us to use, and here in Hebrews 10 He says He will write His law in our hearts. Just a few verses later, it talks of Jesus consecrating “new and living way” for us “to enter the Holiest” (Heb. 10:19-20). As “the Mediator of the new covenant,” Jesus is among us as One who serves, and His words deserve our closest attention (Heb. 12:18-25).

Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen. (Heb. 13:20-21)

What is this work He is doing in us that is so pleasing in His sight? What will be the end of it for the elect and for the rest of mankind?

Coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God and precious, you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. Therefore it is also contained in the Scripture, “Behold, I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect, precious, and he who believes on Him will by no means be put to shame.”
Therefore, to you who believe, He is precious; but to those who are disobedient, “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone,” and “A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense.” They stumble, being disobedient to the word, to which they also were appointed.
But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy. (1 Pet. 2:4-10)

We are called living stones, being built up by Jesus Christ into “a spiritual house” founded upon Himself. Just a few verses later, we are described as chosen to be a royal priesthood (see also Rev. 1:6; 5:10). As a “holy priesthood” in training, what kind of spiritual sacrifices are we to be offering up?

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In Matthew 25:34-40, Jesus says that serving “the least of these My brethren” is counted as service to Him. We are supposed to be among our brethren, and in the world as those who serve, emulating the example of Him that is among us as One who serves

I’d like to wrap up this blog series by quoting two sections of scripture from Isaiah 61. The first was used by Christ in Luke 4:17-21 to describe His 0wn ministry when He came among us as one who serves. The next set of verses describes, the people who have allowed Jesus Christ to build them into a ‘holy priesthood of the Lord’ – the ones who will be among the people in God’s kingdom as those who serve.

“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn, to console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.” (Is. 61:1-3)

But you shall be named the priests of the Lord, they shall call you the servants of our God. You shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, and in their glory you shall boast. Instead of your shame you shall have double honor, and instead of confusion they shall rejoice in their portion. Therefore in their land they shall possess double; everlasting joy shall be theirs. “For I, the Lord, love justice; I hate robbery for burnt offering; I will direct their work in truth, and will make with them an everlasting covenant. Their descendants shall be known among the Gentiles, and their offspring among the people. All who see them shall acknowledge them, that they are the posterity whom the Lord has blessed.” (Is. 61:6-9)

 

 

I Am Among You As One Who Serves, part 3

Let’s start this post by looking at Joshua, an individual who was “strong in the Lord and in the power of His might” (Eph 6:10), as he makes a life choice.

“Now therefore, fear the Lord, serve Him in sincerity and in truth, and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the River and in Egypt. Serve the Lord! And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Josh. 24:14-15)

There was no group-think or corporate mentality within Joshua when he chose to follow the Lord – the member of the Godhead who had personal contact with His people, the same individual that we know today as Jesus. This Being, the Anointed of God, is the one sent by God to the church as a group and to each one as an individual as one who serves.

Dependence on Christ

At this point I’d like to insert a little disclaimer about what I am, and am not, saying in this series of blog posts about church groups. If you don’t make things crystal clear these days, some start making assumptions (and accusations) about what you really mean (like it’s some kind of conspiracy, or something). I am not advocating isolationism or independence! That is a hard road to follow, and we all need human warmth, support, and fellowship. What I am urging is a strong dependence on, and living, interactive faith in Jesus, the Christ of God. If you truly have that you are bullet-proof … no false minister can lead you astray.

Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, and having a High Priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching. (Heb. 10:19-25)

Fellowship is important, and if it’s available to you it is wise to partake, so you can support and strengthen others and so they can do the same for you. We always need to keep in mind that we are a part of a body. It is a sin to separate yourself from your brethren in the body of Christ and to forsake fellowship with others who hold fast to most of the same truths that you do.

It is wise to seek counsel, and listen to preaching from others who evidence the fruits of Godly character, and aren’t trying to take over lordship of your life from Jesus, the Christ of God. However, if things get so bad that fellowship with other believers is not available to you – and many of us have been through times when it wasn’t – the Christ of God is sufficient all by Himself to shore you up, and He will – with or without the help of anyone else – and in time, He will bring about fellowship opportunities as well.

Who Do You Trust?

Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” So we may boldly say: “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” (Heb. 13:5-6)

See what I mean? This kind of relationship with the One who is with us makes you bullet-proof! Indeed, what can man do to me with Him on my side? He is “Christ in you” as one who serves and is our “hope of glory” (Col. 1:27).

Thus says the Lord: “Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart departs from the Lord. For he shall be like a shrub in the desert, and shall not see when good comes, but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land which is not inhabited.
“Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, and whose hope is the Lord. For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, which spreads out its roots by the river, and will not fear when heat comes; but its leaf will be green, and will not be anxious in the year of drought, nor will cease from yielding fruit.
“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?
(Jer. 17:5-9).

Where we put our trust and who we trust in tells God a lot about us. Consider  all the New Testament warnings about false ministers – wolves in sheep’s clothing (Matt. 7:15), Satan’s ministers disguising themselves as servants of light (2 Cor. 11:13-14). Who do you want to put your faith in? what arm of flesh can you rely on today not to turn to the dark side?

I’ve gone through the experience now of seeing people that I regarded as the strongest pillars of the churches of God standing up and preaching God’s holy truth one week, and then suddenly one week I arrive at church to find them advocating the violation of God’s holy laws and commandments. It makes no sense to rely on the arm of flesh … I don’t even trust me! We can’t afford to trust ourselves, and we can’t afford to trust in other men(Prov. 3:5-6). So, where does all of this leave us???"I Am Among You As One Who Serves" baptismforlife.wordpress.com

In Hebrews 11:1 we read, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” This isn’t talking about faith in what we can do – the work of our hands or the work we do for God – or about men that we can put our faith in. Jesus asks in Luke 18:8, “when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?” and I ask, what kind of faith that He is looking for?

Reading the first nine verses of Ezekiel 34 gives us a picture of irresponsible shepherding, the kind that I’m sure most of us have been exposed to in the past. We should realize we need to pray for those who fell into that snare – we may have done the same were we in their shoes. An antidote to this kind of fallible, human shepherding is described in the next few verses.

‘For thus says the Lord God: “Indeed I Myself will search for My sheep and seek them out. As a shepherd seeks out his flock on the day he is among his scattered sheep, so will I seek out My sheep and deliver them from all the places where they were scattered on a cloudy and dark day. And I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them to their own land; I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, in the valleys and in all the inhabited places of the country. I will feed them in good pasture, and their fold shall be on the high mountains of Israel. There they shall lie down in a good fold and feed in rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. I will feed My flock, and I will make them lie down,” says the Lord God. “I will seek what was lost and bring back what was driven away, bind up the broken and strengthen what was sick; but I will destroy the fat and the strong, and feed them in judgment.” (Ezk. 34:11-16)

This Christ is the the kind of Shepherd we must be following, listening to, and placing all our trust in. He is the One among us as a servant, who truly cares for us and is worthy of all our faith. Trust in the One who serves is the kind of faith He will be looking for when He returns to the earth.

I Am Among You As One Who Serves, part 2

In Ephesians 5, Paul reminds us of one of the great mysteries (as he calls it) of the Bible. We are all reminded to submit ourselves to a life-long washing, cleansing, and sanctifying purification by this great Being who was sent to earth to wash us all, and serve us all.

Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, That He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. (Eph. 5:22-27)

Thoughts about Christ

A while back, my wife was reading a book entitled The Law of the Offerings by Andrew Jukes that contained this quote: “Christ is, throughout the Bible the key to scripture. He is the one great idea of the Bible. Know Christ, understand God’s thoughts about Him, and you will understand the Bible.” As we look at the Bible, we could rightly claim that there are many things that are a bit vague and that are “hard to understand.” But if there is one issue that is crystal clear, it is how these two great Beings feel about each other.

God the Father must think very highly of His son because He gave Him many offices of authority and responsibility over the church. He made Him the Head over all things to the church, the Captain of our salvation, the Author and Finisher of our faith, the Shepherd and Bishop of our souls, the Apostle and High Priest, our Savior, Mediator, and King. As Christ faithfully executes the duties of each of those offices on a very intimate, personal level in each of our lives, His appeal to us is the same as it was to Peter on the Passover, which we talked about last week – “let Me serve you … if I do not wash you, you have no part with Me.”

We all want Christ more fully involved in our lives, and He is ever ready to serve us, work within us, cleanse us, and purify us. So, as we go through the rest of this material on how He is “with us” to lead us in this totally unique and unselfish way, let’s keep in mind the many functions that He is there to perform for His “sheep” every moment of every day of their lives.

I Know My Sheep

In Mattew 28:20, Jesus said “I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” His being with and helping His followers didn’t end with his human life. He is still with us, still among us “as one who serves.”

I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you. Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also. At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you. He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. (John 14:18-21)

The word “manifest,” emphanizo (G1718) in the Greek, means to exhibit someone or something to view, to show one’s self, to come to view, appear, indicate, disclose, or declare. Jesus makes Himself known to us, just as He tells us in John 10 when he says that He is known by His sheep (John 10:14).

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“But,” you might be thinking, “He’s speaking here to the church leaders … the apostles … the important people in the church. I’m not important enough to be included in this.” For a direct answer to this fear, we need look no farther than Matthew 18:20 where Christ says, “where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” Christ is personally present whenever His people gather, not matter how small the group. A small family, a couple, two or three brethren in fellowship, there He is in the midst of them “as one who serves.”

An Individual Call

But here again you might be thinking, “yea, but I’m alone. I’m a single person all by myself,” or “I’m living hours away from any group that I could fellowship with. What about me? Surely Christ doesn’t have time to spend on an unimportant little person like me … I’m not worthy of his attention.”

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. ( Rev. 3:20)

This is Christ’s message to an individual in your shoes – “open the door, and I’ll come in for you. Just for you, even if you’re the only one in there who wants Me! I will come in to you and dine with you “as one who serves.”

Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven. For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost. How think ye? if a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray? And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish. (Matt 18:10-14)

Yes even you , the lone individual isolated from other brethren or outcast from corporate groups, is important to Jesus, the Christ of God, if you want Him involved in your life. It’s up to each of us to make that choice, though. Will I answer the knock on the door? Will I let Him serve me as He was sent to do?

“I Am Among You As One Who Serves” series

Part 1