Thursday, April 26, 2012

Choose to Serve the Lord, Part 2

Scripture: Joshua 24:14b
serve Him in sincerity and truth;

Insights:  Notice with me the second part of this phrase found in Joshua 24:14b.  We are to serve with sincerity and truth.  One of the sad realities of being a human being is our ability to deceive others as well as ourselves.  Let me try and explain my point by looking at Luke 16:13.  In this verse Jesus said, “No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.  You cannot serve God and money.”  Yet the church is full of people who are attempting to serve both God and [fill in the blank] __________, money, family, recreation, entertainment, etc.  The reality is because of our sinful nature with which we daily battle, the end result is we begin to despise our time we have to give to God.  We begin serving out of duty and not sincerity and truth.  Paul, also using a money illustration, stated in 2 Corinthians 9:7, “Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”  Let’s maintain this money illustration for a moment longer.  Think of the money as your offering of service to the Lord.  When you perform this act of service is it done with a cheerful heart or under compulsion of obligation?  In King David’s famous Psalm of repentance he wrote, “For you will not delight in sacrifice, or I would give it; you will not be pleased with a burnt offering.  The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise (51:16-17).”  The point David was making and I am attempting to echo is that an act of service, no matter how great and brilliant the world might deem it, is not accepted by the Father if it is not given in sincerity and truth.  The author of Hebrews calls service of this nature a dead work (6:1) and Paul in his first letter to the church in Corinth stated that such work is as wood, hay and stubble and would be burned up (3:12-15).  My fear is that much that is offered in the local church is not done in sincerity and truth, but out of duty or obligation.  I believe these unaccepted acts of service are given because true, genuine relationship with the Living Lord is not truly present in many within the church walls.  Because of these weak relationships, the evangelistic mission of the church is suffering.  Beloved, be a joyful servant!

  1. Have you chosen to serve the Lord?
  2. Are you serving Him in sincerity or out of duty?                              
Prayer: Lord, orchestrate my day in such a manner that I am completely aware of the areas in which You desire me to serve.  Then give me the fortitude to obediently comply with Your wishes.  Amen.  

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