In a couple weeks, I will be preaching at my church. The topic will be Serving One Another. However, my sermon will take a winding path to show what it looks like to serve others. By this, I mean in order to serve others, a disciple of Christ must know the length to which Christ calls us to serve.
We live in a postmodern age. Christianity is under attack from the secular world, as it always has been. In the past, Christianity came under attack in the form of physical wars on battlefields, but today’s attacks come in the form of ideological and philosophical battles, some of which the Church is ill-equipped to respond to. In the 1900s, the Church withdrew from society when the social gospel was gaining popularity, and the it was pushed further out of the public sphere when President Johnson’s War on Poverty began. As such, we’ve lost sight of the extents that Christ has called us to. To that end, we’ve gained an attitude of depraved indifference to those around us, those who need Christ the most–the poor, brokenhearted, orphans, etc. Like the Church at Ephesus in Revelation 2, the Church has forgotten its first love and refrained from the works it once did.
In serving others, Christ calls us to the point of extreme self-sacrifice. To the point of shedding our blood even. When you look at the horrors in the world today, what is your overall response? Do you look away? Do you go “Oh my gosh, that’s horrible.” (Hotel Rwanda) and then go back to what you’re doing? Or are you moved to do something about it? Are you moved to do something about injustice in your own backyard? Do you have a neighbor who suffers? What have you done to reach out to those people to bring them closer to love and redemptive power of Christ?
When I think of everyday men in history who gave their lives to remove injustices in culture, I think of William Wilberforce. He fought for over a quarter of his life (20+ years) to abolish the British Slave Trade, and then more years of his life to abolish slavery…and he succeeded. Not alone mind you, but he was alone for the most part in Parliament in his calls for the fight against slavery. He saw it as such an anti-Christian thing to do to look at someone in slavery and not to do anything about it.
“”God Almighty has set before me two great objects, the suppression of the Slave Trade and the Reformation of Manners (morals)”
Wilberforce was not just a political pragmatist, but a God driven man who had watched the morals of Christendom wane away, most are afraid to rock the cultural boat. If we as Christians do not speak out and act against the injustices in culture–from abortion to orphans and the homeless.
Please realize that I am not on a social justice kick here-but the church has failed to respond with the love of Christ on social issues.
Christ has given us an example to live up to–and it requires us to sacrifice our time, our comfort, and in certain instances our lives for His Gospel. “I must decrease so that he may increase.”
Now, this posting simply a preview to what I wish to say exactly. I will post my actual sermon in a couple weeks as well as hopefully a sound (hopefully a video) recording of me giving it. That will come up on May 26th, so stay tuned to hear and read what exactly being a Servant and Soldier of Christ must look like…