One of the most devastating tragedies in the church today is this attitude we have taken towards Christian service. “If I don’t do it, somebody else will!” The problem being that “somebody else” ends up being either the pastor or one of very select few individuals in the church. This problem is nothing new – in fact, the Corinthians dealt with the very same thing. Let’s examine what Paul had to say about this issue when talking with the Corinthians.
John Wesley said, “One of the principal rules of religion is, to lose no occasion of serving God. And, since he is invisible to our eyes, we are to serve him in our neighbor; which he receives as if done to himself in person, standing visibly before us.” Jesus said just to give a simple cup of water if it’s all you can give – just do it HIS name! This wanton attitude of kicking the can down the road and letting somebody else carry the burden is not Scriptural at all! Worse yet, we not only push the burden over to someone else, but we complain when we are unhappy with what they have done!
What an awful image and testimony we are putting forth with this attitude. We tell the world on social media that they must be more like us. The problem is, they see how we act and don’t want any part of it. This is hard stuff to hear, but it’s true – I’ll not apologize for saying it.
What do we do? Well, I think it’s simplest and best to look at things how they are in God’s Word. So let’s do it.
Our service reflects directly on Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 12:12 – “For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.” Here is the heart of this issue. We are to be the “hands and feet” of Jesus. When we claim Christ but do not serve in the way HE would serve, we mar and scar the very testimony of Christ. We are called “Christians” because we claim to follow Christ and be like Him! We all fail at this every day – nobody can be perfect. But the truth is some of us aren’t even trying. I’ll raise my own hand to say I’m not trying hard enough. There is a job to be done, and a short time in which to do it. What on earth are you doing for Heaven’s sake?
We’re all baptized into the same body. 1 Corinthians 12:13 – “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.” One of the biggest reasons people don’t want any part of Jesus Christ is because they see the division and hate between different members of the Body! Consider what Paul meant in chapter 12 when he starts imagining a conversation between our hands and feet. He is basically saying (almost humorously), “Suppose your hand didn’t do its job because it thought it should have been a foot!” That is absolutely dripping with application. How many times do we not do our Christian duty because God did not call us to pastor a church? Shame on us.
The Spiritual body correlates to the natural body. 1 Corinthians 12:14 -“For the body is not one member, but many.” To drive home that thought, I encourage you to read the rest of this chapter. What Paul does is compare our Spiritual duties and obligations as members of Christ’s Church to that of our physical bodies. It is so easy to see how the eye, hand, and foot all compliment each other in their various roles. They have each been given a gift and a job and they perform it to their utmost each day. It’ll be a good day when each member of the Body of Christ begins to realize and capitalize on the unique gift they have been given and use it wholly for the glory of God. What is done for His glory, He will bless; You can be sure of that.
Don’t make the mistake of undervaluing yourself. Paul says that whether we eat or we drink, we should do ALL to the glory of God. That means anything you can do can be done for His glory. Let’s mount up, start working together, and get something accomplished for Christ! Matthew 9:37 – “Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few;”
Question: Have you come up with some creative ways to get involved in God’s work, particularly if you have not been “called into the ministry”?