Are You A True Servant of Christ?
If you are seeking the approval of men, then you are not a servant of Christ.
Published March 30th, 2020; Updated March 30th, 2020
Main point summary
A true servant of Christ Jesus is someone who seeks to please God.
Ἄρτι γὰρ ἀνθρώπους πείθω
For am I now seeking the approval of man,
ἢ τὸν θεόν;
or of God?
ἢ ζητῶ ἀνθρώποις ἀρέσκειν ;
Or am I trying s to please man?
εἰ ἔτι ἀνθρώποις ἤρεσκον ,
If I were still trying to please man,
Χριστοῦ δοῦλος οὐκ ἂν ἤμην.
I would not be a t servant 1 of Christ.
Paul begins his letter to the Galatians with the following themes: 1:1-5 Salutation- It's worth noting that Paul briefly describes what the Gospel is in vs 4. The occasion for Paul's writing is that the Galatian church was in danger of forgetting or leaving the true gospel. 1:6-9 Admonishment- Paul quickly launches into an admonishment. In a sense stating that there is only one true Gospel and all those who preach a contrary one, whether they be man or angel should be accursed. Strong words from the apostle. 1:10 Defense and Justification Verse 10 serves as a defense for the strong curing language of the previous verse as well as a justification for Paul's personal ministry, call, and conversion. 1:11-12 Justification Clarified Paul received the Gospel he proclaims from none other than Jesus the Messiah. A faithful herald and servant seeks the approval of his master. What could be more basic in fulfilling the proclamation of the good news than proclaiming the good news which one was given in an accurate way? 1:13-14 A Look-Back Paul then looks back at how he used to be, referencing the "still" in 1:10d. At one time Paul did seek the approval and good pleasure of men. He was without a doubt a type-A personality. Nobody bested him, he was head of the class, without equal among his peers. Not only in his intellectual abilities but also his zeal for the traditions of my fathers. Just listen to his language. Paul said he was "advancing in Judaism beyond many of my own age among my people and extremely zealous. . . for the traditions of my fathers ."
Are you a servant of Christ? How do you know? On what grounds would you defend your servanthood? How does Paul? Take just a minute and write down or think of your credentials, your accomplishments, your current endeavors. What was/is your motivation? What Paul says in just a few words in verse 10 is this: Those who seek the approval and good pleasure of men are not true servants of Christ. What is it that motivates you every day? Why do you do the things you do? Both the significant and the insignificant? What kept you awake late last night reading and studying? In preparation for teaching a lesson, leading a class devotional or praying with your wife, who were you seeking to please? When you prepare a sermon, who are you thinking about? Paul is able to confidently identify as a servant of Christ because it is Christ's approval that motivates him as he writes, preaches and lives. How about you? We have been privileged with receiving the greatess news the world will ever hear. Our motivation in sharing that news and living out the truths found within it should be solely focused on the giver of the gift. Namely, God. In all we do, from choosing an outfit for the day to preaching a sermon to cooking a meal, all of these things ought to be governed with one ultimate thought. "Lord Jesus, may what I am doing bring you great glory, may I do this in a way that pleases you!" So the next time you tie your shoes or walk through the rain or share the gospel with a neighbor may the cry of your heart, the longing in your soul and the instinct of your mind all cry "For you and you alone Lord Jesus my Savior!"