Galatians 5:13

 

I would not expect to have to defend the saving of a child’s life over the life of a Gorilla but that is what our world has come to. Human life is more valuable than any animal.  When we lose a Biblical world view we get confused.  Our secular society has bought the lie of evolution and the debate over a gorilla or a boy happens.

 

Genesis 1:26 Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

 

I wish we were like Animal rights activists in one regard; their passion, not their actions and angry words but the depth by which they feel the tragedy of the loss of animal life.

 

As Christians I wish we had that kind of passion – that we felt the depth of tragedy when God’s word is violated and when God’s children are killed and abused.  3,000 babies are being killed every day, girls are sold into sex trades, kids are abused and neglected, the elderly are abused and neglected.  There is so much pain and suffering.  Innocent people are shot down for no reason and Facebook and the news media blows up over the death of one gorilla.

There are too many problems in the world for us to deal with all of them but we can tackle some of them and support others who are willing to tackle the rest.  It is about serving others and protecting those who can’t take protect themselves.  As a Christian that is what God has called us to do.

 

We are to serve one another like Jesus served us.

Mark 10:43  Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 44  and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. 45  For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

 

Everyone wants to be great – do you want to be great? Then serve others.

Serving others is stinky and dirty work.

 

John 13:3 Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; 4  so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. 5  After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.

 

We don’t have to physically wash one another’s feet but we do have to serve one another. Being a Christian means being a servant.  If you are unwilling to serve others, then you should reconsider being a follower of Christ.  We have been freed to serve.

 

Galatians 5:13 You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve ONE ANOTHER in love.

 

We are all called to be servants but some are called to hold the office of servant; the office of deacon. Now that we have Elders we are ready to fill the office of deacon.  The biblical qualification for a man to hold this office seems strict, which shows us how seriously we should take fulfilling the office.

 

1 Timothy 3:8 Deacons, likewise, are to be men worthy of respect, sincere, not indulging in much wine, and not pursuing dishonest gain. 9  They must keep hold of the deep truths of the faith with a clear conscience. 10  They must first be tested; and then if there is nothing against them, let them serve as deacons. 11  In the same way, their wives are to be women worthy of respect, not malicious talkers but temperate and trustworthy in everything. 12  A deacon must be the husband of but one wife and must manage his children and his household well.

 

So a married Christian man who manages his children well and thus is a man worthy of respect.

The Elders are asking for your input.  What men in the congregation meet the biblical qualifications to be a deacon?  Who do you see as men worthy of respect?

I sent an email so you would have time to pray and think about this question.  Now please take a moment to write down a few names.  The Elders will vet those named and see if they are willing to accept the responsibility of the office of deacon.

 

The Deacons of the congregation will be the go to servants to serve the congregations needs. They will help organize the rest of you to serve in many different areas.  Then the church will be able to truly function as God designed so we can all reach maturity.

 

Ephesians 4:11 It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be shepherds and teachers, 12  to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13  until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

 

The majority time the word serve is used it means to meet physical needs; physical needs of people. So we are not serving a program but we are serving people.  Now we may use a program to make that happen but the focus is on serving the needs of people.  We all need to have that focus of serving others.

 

We must go from ME to WE. That was the sentiment of President Kennedy in his 1961 inaugural address.             “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country,”

 

As an Ohio Senator Warren G. Harding gave the keynote address at the Republican convention on June 7, 1916, “We must have a citizenship less concerned about what the government can do for it and more anxious about what it can do for the nation.”

 

100 years later I can say, “We must have a congregation less concerned about what the church can do for it and more anxious about what it can do for others.”

“Ask not what your church can do for you, ask what you can do for your Lord.”

 

Quit being selfish and worrying about yourself and your needs. See what you can do to serve others.

 

Galatians 5:13 You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve ONE ANOTHER in love.

 

Do you love others enough to serve them?

You don’t even have to know them to love other people and treat them the way you want to be treated.

Serving others can be seen in the small acts of generosity. Watching out for someone’s child, a smile, or even letting a car get in front of you.

All you need to know about someone’s Christianity can be learned by how they drive.

 

I remember driving home one evening and cars were backed up on Main Street. I looked to see what the issue was I saw an elderly lady with a walker begin to cross the street.  The oncoming traffic stopped so she could cross safely and by one car stopping there was a short traffic jam.  I was proud of the driver who stopped and helped the rest of us do the right thing.  Showing honor and respect to the elderly and by serving a fellow citizen of Brookville.  Such a simply act of service to let someone cross the street.

 

Do you slow down and let cars get out? Why not?  Are you in that big of a hurry to get somewhere?  How much time does it really take?  Has someone ever let you out – how did you feel?  It is easy to make people happy and prevent a frustrating situation.

 

This week when we were coming home from Sarah’s hospital visit we drove through McDonald’s for a snack. It seemed by the scars on her arm that the lady collecting money use to cut herself.  So I tried to be friendlier than normal and give her a big smile.  It was my way of serving a stranger who has probably struggled with depression and self-worth issues.

 

We can find people to serve in simply ways. Open your eyes to the needs of others.

 

How can you serve others? When you’re driving, at home, at work, at worship?

Do you look for ways to meet the needs of others or are you so busy you fly by without realizing someone besides yourself has needs.

You can always find an excuse, “a reason” not to serve others.  Will you be honest with yourself and admit that sometimes you are just to selfish to serve.  You only think about your needs.

 

God created you to serve and has given you gifts by which to serve others.

 

1 Peter 4:10 Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.

 

1 Corinthians 7:7 I wish that all men were as I am. But each man has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that.

 

What gift have you received that you can serve others with?

 

Romans 12:6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. 7  If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8  if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully.

 

We each have many gifts and abilities that we can use to serve others. Recognize that you have gifts to use to serve others – I have given a few very simple suggestions.

 

The question is not that you don’t have a gift by which you can serve others.

The question is will you use your gifts to serve others.

What will it take for you to take your eyes off yourself and serve others?

 

Hebrews 12:2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3  Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

 

Jesus served us by dying on the cross and we are to look to Him so we don’t grow weary in doing good.

Christian will you serve one another more than you do now?

If you are not in Christ will you accept His gift of love?

He loves you and wants you to have peace and joy in His forgiveness.

 

Fix your eyes on Jesus