SALVATION AND SERVICE

 

1.     Introduction

Jn 15:14-15  No longer servants and friends.

·         Disciples progressed in relationship with Lord to status of friends.

·         Servants receive instruction - friends receive revelations, insights.

·         Serving is the pathway to developing friendship with God.

·         Serving arises out of relationship with Jesus - our response to Him.

·         Serving is the pathway to greatness, to promotion in God's Kingdom.  (Mt 20:25-27)

 

2.     Salvation and Service

Eph 2:8-10

a.    Salvation (Eph 2:8,9) = His work

·         Salvation is based totally upon the work Jesus did - His work!

·         Grace - power of God released into our life to change us, empowers us.

·         Faith - key to accessing the grace/power of God.

·         Gift - not works.  Our only work is to believe - trust and rely totally on.

·         We cannot add to what Christ did to make us right with God.

 

b.    Service (Eph 2:10) = Our works

i.   Identity - who we are in Christ is foundation for serving Him.

·         Workmanship (4161) - fabric, fine piece of craftsmanship.

·         We belong to Christ - we are children of God accepted, loved, forgiven.

·         God's spirit has wrought a change within us - new creation.

·         New identity - child of God, new centre - Christ Himself (2 Cor 5:15,16).

·         Note:  Identity not found in what we do ώ striving, performing.  Found in what God says about us - what He says we are.

·         Devil constantly attacked Jesus' identity - if then doMt 4:3

·         Devil constantly tried to shift focus from faith in Word of God.

·         Jn 13:3  Jesus secure in identity and in destiny ώ served.

·         Must establish who we are in Christ or strive/perform/guilt.

 

ii.   Service (Eph 2:10)

·         Created (2936) - to fabricate, form with special purpose in mind.

                                         - to make an original for a specific purpose.

·         Works (2041) - to labour in an occupation.

·         Phil 2:13  God is at work in you to will and to do of His good pleasure.

·         Holy Spirit active, energises us so desire to do things that please.

·         Holy Spirit reveals what God wants us to do.

·         Our activities and works must arise out of inner motivation of Holy Spirit.

·         Col 1:29  I labour = work hard to the point of feeling fatigue and weary.

 

3.     Abounding Work of the Lord

 

·         1 Cor 15:58  Steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in work of love.  Knowing - labour not in vain.

·         In vain - empty, without purpose, satisfaction, reward.

·         Service arises out of:

i.   Love of God, gratitude and appreciation for Lord and what He has done.

ii.   Fear of Lord - respect and reverence for who He is.

 

 

 

 

Characteristics of Works (Eph 2:10)

 

i.      Good works - serving Lord before serve man.  First to Lord then to us.  (2 Cor 8:5)

·         Service that arises out of faith and love - He is the centre.  (2 Cor 5:14-16)

·         Works that enjoy the blessing and favour of God.

·         Not dead – arising out of duty, guilt.  (Heb 6:1)

·         Religious people become occupied with dead works.

·         Work of God have life, because flow out of faith and love, positive, joy, life.

 

ii.    Prepared by God to serve

·         Before ordained (4282) – to prepare, provide, make ready ahead of time.

·         God has prepared works for each person to be involved in.

·         Works are unique to each person’s gifting, personality, experience, maturity.

·         Destiny – something bigger than ourselves – purpose for living.

·         Faith – each person must listen to God directing them.

 

iii.   Lifestyle of Service

·         Walk (4043) – to tread all around, be occupied with.

·         Serving is a life style – not something that happens on Sunday.

·         Tit. 1:16  People can profess to know God but in works deny.

·         Tit. 2:11-14  Looking for = await with patience and confidence.

·         Zealous (2207) – covet, desire, passion, strong feelings.

·         Liquids – to boil            solids - to glow.

·         Tit. 3:8:14  Be careful to maintain good works – or barren.

 

iv.   Reward for Service

·         2 Cor. 5:10  Must all appear – give account of (works) done.

·         1 Cor. 3:13  Every mans work put to test – reward or loss.

·         Mt. 16:27   Reward every man according to works.

-       Reward = pay for services

-       Work (4238) – to practise, perform repeatedly, habitually.

·         Habit of laying down life to serve the Lord will be rewarded.

·         Cf Mt 25 – talents.