Who are you serving?

The apostle Paul called himself a “bondservant” of Jesus Christ (Romans 1:1). In fact so did Peter, James, Timothy and Jude.

In the days of the writings of the apostles, the term bondservant or servant or slave would suggest among many things:

 The servant would have to listen closely to the master’s instructions.

 The servant would obey the desires and commands of the master.

 The servant’s time was for the master’s use.

 The servant’s priorities had to be the priorities of the master.

It is probably all summed up by saying that the bondservant was no longer his own but owned by his master to do his bidding. The life of the Master was lived through the servant.

In these cases what the master was like was crucial, whether he was loving and kind or harsh and cruel. We are the bondservants of Jesus. What a glorious, majestic, holy, righteous, forgiving and merciful Person, the Lord Jesus is. What a beautiful Person to serve.

Two things to note are firstly, Paul’s use of the word “bondservant” also reveals that he has put himself into that position. Paul has bonded himself to the position of a servant to Jesus. Paul finds himself so indebted to Jesus that he gives himself back to Jesus totally to be used by Jesus as He wants. It is a willing total submission. Secondly, note that Paul is a bondservant to Jesus – not to an organisation, a denomination, a personality, a religion, a church – but to the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.

Jesus conveyed a similar picture to the term “bondservant” when he called His followers to Himself. He called them “disciples”. Jesus said His disciples, His followers, were to deny themselves, take up their cross and follow Him (Matthew 16:24).

Both bondservant and disciple reflect the same meanings. It is no longer “me” I think of first but Jesus. It is letting Christ reign in my life by the power of His Holy Spirit.

According to the Bible, if we stop being disciples and choose to follow “other than Christ Jesus” then we cease being a Christian because the term disciple and Christian meant the same thing (Acts 11:26).

Spiritual service from God’s standpoint is doing what He wants, when He wants and how He wants it done. Self no longer dictates what it wants to do but waits for instructions, then gets busy about the work the Master has called him to do. Until instructions come, we wait at the feet of Jesus, loving Him, enjoying Him and getting to know Him.

Post published in: Faith

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