The Calling of Christ Is Yours – Servanthood
We’ve now enjoyed two weeks at The Well, our mid-week time of fellowship and Bible study held here at Renewal Chapel in Huntington. It’s been a warm and inviting time of fellowship with fellow disciples who are longing to follow Christ! It’s so exciting to see women and men growing and applying Christ’s example in His life to their own!
In our first small group Bible study, we looked deeply at these verses from Mark’s account of Jesus’ life:
“Calling them to Himself, Jesus said to them, ‘You know that those who are recognized as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them; and their great men exercise authority over them. But it is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant; and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.’”
Mark 10:42-45 NASB
“But it is not this way among you…”
These words jump off the page at me! How much do we make our Christian leadership look like the leadership of the world – a lording over of exerted authority?
We’ve become more “conformed” to our culture than we have been “transformed” through following Christ. Paul addressed this heartbreaking problem in Romans 12:1 and 2. Read his telling words:
“Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.”
Romans 12:1-2 NASB
It’s simple. When we present ourselves to God, which is reasonable, we naturally won’t be conformed. We’ll renew our minds and be transformed by the effervescent presence of God in our lives.
His effervescent presence always leads us to humility which always leads us to servanthood rather than exerted authority.
Paul followed Christ’s example even as an Apostle, a man who was given authority over the early church in the years immediately following Christ’s ascension. Look at Paul’s way of handling a potential disagreement between him and Philemon:
“Therefore, though I have enough confidence in Christ to order you to do what is proper, yet for love’s sake I rather appeal to you—since I am such a person as Paul, the aged, and now also a prisoner of Christ Jesus — I appeal to you for my child Onesimus, whom I have begotten in my imprisonment, who formerly was useless to you, but now is useful both to you and to me. I have sent him back to you in person, that is, sending my very heart, whom I wished to keep with me, so that on your behalf he might minister to me in my imprisonment for the gospel; but without your consent I did not want to do anything, so that your goodness would not be, in effect, by compulsion but of your own free will.”
Philemon 1:8-14 NASB
If humility flows from the presence of God, what does pride flow from? Could it be that our desire to exert our authority with our fellow believers is the result of our own pride?
Think about it and join us next Wednesday to see even more about following Christ’s very own example of servanthood from humility!