2 Samuel 15:21 Serving Others

Soldiers in line

But Ittai replied to the king, “As surely as the LORD lives, wherever my lord the king lives, wherever my lord the king may be, whether it means life or death, there will your servant be.” 2 Samuel 15:21 

Serving others can mean very different things to different people and different situations. To some degree, ever person serves somebody to some level.

When talking about serving others, most people think about free serving, especially in the Christian community. Yet, serving someone is just helping meet the needs of someone else.

Every person who works a job is serving someone. They are serving the boss and the costumers of that business. Some may directly serve, while others are very indirectly serving.

David was fleeing from his son, Absalom, for his life. Absalom was working to take over as king. As David was leaving, Ittai, a foreigner, a Hittite, wanted to go with David. David was going to send him back, but Ittai refused. He committed to serve David anywhere and anytime, even unto death.

Many people do not like to be a servant to someone else. They want to be served. Yet, Jesus, who was God’s Son, came to serve man, who broke relationship with God and deserved only death. He showed commitment to mankind, even including death on a cross.

It is common for a person to serve someone else as a long as it is a benefit to serve. There has to be something in it for the person to serve. All Jesus had was the hope that some would follow Him and be saved. There was no guarantee.

Commitment to serve must be made, regardless if it is a voluntary service or a paid service. Every believer is to work as unto the Lord, giving his best for whoever he is serving at the time.

Your first commitment to serve must be to God. Serve Him first and foremost. Then you must be willing to serve others as He puts them in your path. Give your best to everyone you meet.

As Ittai stated, be willing to serve, even to the point of death. This is showing the love God has shown you and is showing the rest of the world. As you are serving others, God will put others in your path to serve you. God will be your strength to make it through some tough service and you will be blessed more than any man can bless you.

Who can you serve today?

Today I pray that you will know who God wants you to serve; that you will serve as Jesus served you; that you will have God’s love for others in your life; and that God will use you to touch the hearts of many people. 

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Hebrews 6:10 God Sees Your Work

 

Hands of Homeless Man Receiving Bowl of Soup

God is not unjust, he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them. Hebrews 6:10

Janitors are very important people who often do not get recognized. They clean the workplace very clean every day or through the night, yet, very few people give them thanks. Yet, if the work was not done, immediately every person would notice the trash lying around. They are servants who work behind the scene.

Showing love and helping other people can often seem like a thankless, worthless job. It can often appear that no one sees what a person has been doing in helping someone else out. It is often done behind the scenes.

There have been many people who have served others out of love for God and for other people. As they serve, they are very seldom noticed or recognized. Some of those people give up serving others after a time, because the lack of recognition. They feel as if no one really cares, so it does not matter if they help someone else out or not.

Many of the people who help out in the church can often feel that way. They serve as a Sunday School teacher, or nursery worker, they visit the sick in the hospitals or homes, they help out the elderly in and many other ways of helping out people. Yet it always seems to be hidden from God’s sight.

God does see what a person is doing and will reward the person in the end. Every time a believer does a service for someone else, God works on preparing a reward. That reward may or may not be seen in this life, but it will come. One must not give up on serving others.

You may be one of these people who have served others for a long time and not seen anything come from it. Trust that God sees what you are doing and will reward you in His time. Do not give up serving others.

Jesus served and did not always see immediate results of His service. You are to be just like Jesus. There will come a day when you will stand before God and He will tell you well done, good and faithful servant.

Continue to serve out of love for God and for others and wait for your reward.

I pray today that you will know God’s love for you and others; that you will know God sees what you are doing for others; that you will have the heart of Jesus to serve; and that you will see God’s reward for your work. 

Mark 10:43-44 Be A Willing Slave

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Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. Mark 10:43-44

James and John began to ask Jesus to have special places around the table with Jesus in heaven. They wanted to be seen as great. The other disciples were upset with them about this. Jesus told them that in order to be great, they must be a servant and slave to everyone else.

Wanting and grabbing for power is something that many people do in this life. They want to be the leader and strive to do what it takes. Sometimes they want to be leader because they think they know what is best. Others want to be the leader because of the power they believe it holds.

While many hate dictators over them, many want to be dictators over others. They want to be the one in charge and leading others. They want the power. Most do not want to be a servant or a slave to another person.

Although Jesus has absolute power over all of creation, He does not force His power on people. Jesus came to serve all people.  Every person on this earth is sentenced to a death sentence. Jesus came to serve them and remove that death sentence for them. Jesus only does what is best for each person on this earth, serving them.

Believers are to live in the same way that Jesus did. Jesus goes beyond just being a servant to another person, but being their slave. Believers are to put other people before themselves.

Jesus is to be the head of every believer. After that is all the rest of the people. Self is to come in very last.

Take a look at your own life. Are you being served or are you serving?

If you are serving people, you will also be serving God. Allow God to guide you in how to best serve the people around you. Learn from Him how to be the slave you need to be. It is by your service of love that people will know the love of God has for them.

As you are a slave to God, you will be a slave to others, seeking to meet their greatest needs–salvation of their souls. This is what Jesus did. Are you doing it?

I pray today that you will know the love God has for all people; that God will show you ways to meet the needs of people around you; that God will give you the needed strength to serve others; and that you will follow His will in all of your life.

Politics, Good Or Bad?

Politics

Political ‘discussions’ go on all the time, everywhere a person goes. Turn on the tv to any channel and you will hear something about politics. Watch any tv show or movie and there will nearly always be some political point in it. Walk into the break room at work and someone is usually there giving a political opinion. Read the FB feeds and people are talking about something political, for or against. Some say it is bad, others say it is good.

Politics are a part of life. All politics are just the activities of a government or governing authority over a given area. Government is required. If no one is overseeing what is going on, there will be chaos.

Judges 21:25 New International Version (NIV)

25 In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as they saw fit.

There was a time in Israel when they had no king or ruler. It was right after God had stopped using various people to be judges (rulers) to guide and lead the people in what God wanted for them. During this time that they had no one lead them, everyone did what they wanted. It would bring chaos to the nation.

When everyone is doing whatever they want to do, there is chaos. There is no rules to go by, so anything goes.

Political Chaos

Many today want this kind of life. They want to be able to do what they want, when they want, and how they want, regardless of how it affects anyone else. This is what the world tries to call true freedom.

Now comes the problem for many Christians, how much should they be involved with the politics of their city, state, nation? Some are on the front lines, fighting hard for Christian beliefs and principles. While others refuse to even vote or have anything to do with any politics.

There are good points and bad points about whether or not to be involved in politics. There are pros and cons about being involved with politics. A lot of what makes it good or bad is the focus. Why are you involved or not involved? If you are involved, what is your purpose? If you are not involved, what is your purpose?

Romans 13:1 New International Version (NIV)

13 Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.

One of the most common arguments that many believers state about not being involved in politics is that the government is corrupt and not following God. They state that they only follow God and not man.

While it is true that you should follow God, that does not mean you do not obey man. God has placed every person in authority that is currently in authority. The difficult part for many, is this also means that person that is in leadership that does not follow God and does everything that is against God’s ways. Those that are in authority are to be obeyed. The only time you have permission from God to not obey those in authority, is if they are telling you to do something against His word.

Acts 5:29 New International Version (NIV)

29 Peter and the other apostles replied: “We must obey God rather than human beings!

Peter had been taken in by the authorities, some of whom were of the temple of God, and told not to speak about Jesus in public. His answer was that he must obey God first. This is the only time that disobedience of public authorities is acceptable according to God’s word.

Obey God Over Man

Now the question comes as to how much a person should be involved in politics. Should a Christian be on the front lines pushing for rules to be passed that honor God? Should a Christian be fighting against policies that do not honor God?

Jesus never got involved with any politics. He was focused on doing what God had sent Him to do. Outside of paying His taxes, the Bible does not show Jesus doing anything politically.

Does that mean that a Christian should not be a part of any political party or decisions?

There is no straight answer on that question. You must find out what God has for you to do in this life. The first, and most important thing for you to do in this life is be a witness of who Jesus is and what He has done and can do.

Jesus called the disciples to be His witness:

Matthew 28:19-20 New International Version (NIV)

19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Is that your primary focus in your life? Or is your focus to change the political scene?

Standing against bad policies will only do so much, then it will fall short. All the policies against sin will never change a person’s heart. The only one that can do that is Jesus.

If every person who claims to be a believer was to go out and make disciples of Jesus, how much would the world be changed?

Be My Witness

If every where disciples were being made on a daily basis, those who get into political positions would be believers also. Believers in those positions can make a difference in the policies made.

Changing the heart of a person begins with getting to know Jesus. God will create a new heart in a person and change the way they do things. Outside of that, no one will ever really change, they will still be set for sin.

There is a place for politics in this world and believers have a place with politics. The issue is not whether politics is good or bad, but what you do with what you know. Politics should not be the main focus in the life of a believer. Bringing people to Jesus should be your primary focus, then if God leads you, be involved in the politics of your nation.

As you work in politics, your work should not mirror that of the world, one that crushes or demeans the other person to gain control or get your way. Many that are in the political world bad-mouth or climb over other people. They bash others to make themselves look good.

Every believer is to be a servant, building others up, not themselves. Work politics in the way God would–with love, compassion, and mercy. As you do that, you can allow God to change the lives of many people through you. Hearts can be truly changed, rather than just some more rules made.

Being A Servant

So it is not about whether politics is good or bad, but what is done with politics. How is it used to help others, and not about how it helps yourself. What can you do today to build this world to be better and more ready for Jesus’ return?

Hebrews 10:5-7 Not Sacrifice, But Service

“Therefor, when Christ came into the world, he said: Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but a body you prepared for me; with burnt offerings and sin offerings you were not pleased. Then I said, Here I am–it is written about me in the scroll–I have come to do your will, my God.” Hebrews 10:5-7

Even though God had set up the Old Testament Law of offerings and sacrifices, it was not what He ultimately wanted. All of those sacrifices could not remove sin nor change the heart of a person. The Law was just a set up to get the people ready for Jesus, who was prophesied about while Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden, several thousand years before the Law came into existence.

People have a love-hate relationship with rules and regulations. They like them because then they know what they can get by with and still be legal. At the same time they hate them because it points out what they cannot do legally.

Look anywhere in the world and you can see that rules do not change hearts. People will still break the rules and follow their own ways, trying to not get caught.

When Jesus came, He came saying He was there to do the will of His Father. His heart was in the right place. As a believer you are to be just like Jesus.

Just like a parent wants their children to want to do the right thing, God wants His children to want to do the right thing. You were also prophesied about as being one of the many children of Abraham and one of the many to follow Jesus. In a sense “it was written about” you “in the scroll.”

How are you living your life?

Are you trying to offer sacrifices and offerings to God to please Him?

Or are you trying to please Him by doing His will?

Find out what God wants you to do and do it. That will please God. He wants your heart and service, not the sacrifice and offering.

I pray today that you will know God’s will for your life; that God will have your heart; that your life will be one of service to and for God; and that God will use you to reach this world for Jesus.

Hebrews 9:14 A Greater Cleansing

“How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!” Hebrews 9:14

Throughout the Old Testament high priests had to offer goats and other animals as a sacrifice for the sins of the people. It was looked upon as a great thing. Yet, all it did was cover up the sins of the people. Those sacrifices were unable to remove the sins.

When Jesus came, He came as the High Priest. He had to offer a sacrifice, not for His owns sins, but for the sins of all the people of the world. The sacrifice He chose was the perfect one–Himself.

He went into God’s presence as the High Priest to offer His sacrifice. He laid Himself upon the altar of God–the cross. There He shed His blood for every sin of every person throughout all time.

The author of Hebrews now is saying think about this. If the blood of those animals was great, even though they really did not do anything of eternal value, how much more valuable is the blood of Jesus?

His blood does not just cover up your sins, it removes your sins. It not only removes the sins, it clears your guilty conscience so that you may serve God.

Many believers condemn themselves because of past sins. They feel guilty about committing some sins over and over. Jesus shed His blood to remove the guilt and to cleanse your past. You may now stand holy and righteous before God.

Since you are now holy and righteous, you may also stand before God to serve Him. What does God want you to do for Him?

Kings have servants who clean floors, provide food, provide entertainment, and many other things. God wants you to reach His lost children, be the witness of Jesus, and be His hands, feet and voice in this lost world.

You may be small in the world’s and your own eyes, but to God you are a great servant if you are doing what He wants you to do.

How are you serving God today?

I pray today that God will reveal ways He wants you to serve Him; that God will provide the strength to do His work; that you will be willing to do what God wants; and that you will be holy and righteous in Jesus.