Nothing wrong with being a ‘Slave of Christ’
In my last column I wrote about my friend that was rethinking his faith. He took a long look at converting to Islam. Through his journey, God has taught me many lessons. The one lesson that stands out the most is being a slave. I know. That is an emotionfilled word. There is a lot that comes with that word; hate, anger, guilt, remorse and more.
The New Testament refers to believers as slaves a number of times. Ephesians 6:5-6 says, “Slaves, be obedient to those who are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in the sincerity of your heart, as to Christ; not by way of eyeservice, as menpleasers, but as slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart.” 1 Peter 2:16 tells us, “Act as free men, and [a]do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God.”
Aren’t we also referred to as children of God, Andy? Yes, we are children of God, but we are also slave to him. Dictionary.com defines a slave as, “a person who is the property of and wholly subject to another; a bond servant.” Some of us automatically responded to this saying, “I am not anyone’s property!” I had that exact thought when I heard this.
Slaves are property. People are still sold and purchased for a price all over the world. This is a major problem in the world and we as the Church should be doing much more to end slavery, but that is a different article for a different day.
If you consider yourself a follower of Christ then YOU ARE A SLAVE. We were bought for a price. That price was Christ’s blood. Jesus paid our debt in full and if you call yourself his follower then you are a slave to him. Jesus was a servant during his time here on Earth. He came here to serve, not be served. Matthew 20:26-28 tells us, “It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Christians as a whole need to accept this way of thinking. We love being told that we are “Children of God” but our feelings get hurt when we are told we need to be “Slaves of Christ”. Many of us have become spoiled brats when it comes to serving our King and His Kingdom. We want all of the perks and none of the work. We need to get our hands dirty. Some of us don’t look at it as our job to serve others. It is our job. As slaves of Christ we are called to serve.
Romans 8:16-17 says, “The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs — heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glori- fied with him.” We are God’s children, but we are also his slaves. What a beautiful picture of redemption; that a King makes his slaves his children.
John Wesley once 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 neighbour; which he receives as if done to himself in person, standing visibly before us.”
Let us serve our neighbors and in doing so, let us serve our King.
ANDY BUTTS COLUMNIST