Wednesday, June 13, 2012

120613 - Luke 12 - The Devoted Servant

Wednesday SOAP: A faithful servant isn't just (as Dr. J. Vernon McGee used to say) someone who would "vote for" Jesus, but someone who knows His master's will and is attentive - and entirely devoted - to His interests. A well-trained servant knows His master so well that he may be guided without a word - only a simple look, (Psalm 32:8), in contrast to willful animals who must be controlled by leashes, bits and bridles. (Ps. 32:9)

S: Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes. Truly, I say to you, he will dress himself for service and have them recline at table, and he will come and serve them. (Luke 12:37)

O: Here's a promise that really sounds like too much. Jesus sounds like He is describing John 13:3-5 - but He is describing a future celebration for those followers who have been "awake." Christ was free to make any promise He wanted - or make no promise at all - so rather than adopting Peter's false humility that would have left him with no part in Christ, (John 13:8), I should see that this is His desire, (Luke 22:15), and it should be mine as well, to share what He wants to experience with His beloved servants.

A: So I must know what contitutes wakefulness. Here's a catalog from this chapter:

  1. Beware the leaven of hypocrisy - because nothing is hidden that shall not be revealed. (Luke 12:1-3)
  2. Fear God - and depend on Him - and not men. (Luke 12:4-7)
  3. Proclaim Christ openly and fearlessly. (Luke 12:8-12)
  4. Make your life a strategy to invest your effort, your creativity, your influence and your resources in God's agenda - building His Kingdom through conversion, (Luke 12:8-12, implied: see Acts 5:29-6:1a), as well as development, (Luke 12:42) - and trust Him for what you need for this life. (Luke 12:13-34)
  5. Maintain a sense of urgency about this and don't grow complacent with the delay. You have limited time to make a difference. (Luke 12:35-44)
  6. Count the cost of sincerely following Christ (Luke 12:49-53) and that of failing to truly do so. (Luke 12:45-48, 57-59)
  7. Be sure your strategy takes the indicators of His coming (Luke 12:54-56, c.f., Luke 21:6-36) into account.
P: Father, once again I thank you for Christ's empathy with my infirmities. I can see this whole list as one thing: put you first in everything. And yet I understand that without detail, without explanation, without illustrations and examples both pro and con, I would be far more easily led to believe that I am in fact already doing that. As it is, when I come up against His teaching, I see so much need for growth. Increase my faith, Lord, that I may be found faithful at His coming in all these ways.


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