Service that makes Sense

Friday: Worthy of Our Best

Romans 12:1 In this week’s study, we look at the kind of service we are to offer and see why such service is reasonable.
Worthy of Our Best

It is reasonable because God is worthy of our very best efforts. In the fourth chapter of Revelation we read, “You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being” (Rev. 4:11). 

And again, “Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise” (Rev. 5:12)!

That is the testimony of the elders, the four living creatures, the angels and the entire company of the redeemed. Their testimony means that God is worthy of all honor, including the very best we have to offer. 

Do you believe that? 

I think that is the problem. If we did believe it, we would judge it reasonable to live for Jesus now and we would do it. Instead, in many cases we only say, “Jesus is worthy of all honor,” and then go out and fail to live for Him. Our actions refute our profession. On the other hand, if you do live for Him, giving God all you can ever hope to be, then you are testifying that God truly is a great God and that He is worthy of the best you or anyone else can offer. 

In the final analysis, only that which is spiritual will last. Everything else, everything we see and touch and handle and sometimes even covet here, will pass away. Jesus said, “Heaven and earth will pass away” (Matt. 24:35). If that is true of the heavens and the earth, it is certainly true of the small perishable things you and I give so much of our lives for. On the other hand, although “the world and its desires pass away,” we are also told that the one who “does the will of God lives forever” (1 John 2:17). And so do his works! The Bible says, “Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord…. They will rest from their labor, [and] their deeds will follow them.” Learning to think this way is part of what it means to think spiritually. It is a start in developing a truly Christian mind. 

I close with two illustrations. Jim Elliot, that young missionary, wrote on one occasion, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.” He gave his life to God in what he judged to be the most reasonable service, and he gained a spiritual inheritance forever. 

The second example is another missionary whose name was William Borden. He came from a wealthy privileged family, was a graduate of Yale University, and had the promise of a wonderful and lucrative career before him. But he felt a call to serve God as a missionary in China and left for the field even though his family and friends thought him a fool for going. After a short time away and even before he reached China, Borden contracted a fatal disease and died. He had given up everything to follow Jesus. He died possessing nothing in this world. But Borden of Yale did not regret it. We know this because he left a note as he lay dying which said, “No reserve, no retreat, and no regrets.” Like so many others, he found the service of Christ to be eminently reasonable and gained a lasting reward.

Study Questions
  1. How can our actions sometimes refute our profession that the Lord Jesus Christ is worthy of all honor and glory?
  2. Rather than devoting ourselves to spiritual matters, what are some things we wrongly give much of our lives to that are going to pass away?

Review: Read Romans 8:28-29; Revelation 4:11; and Revelation 5:12. What do these passages say about God’s will? What do they say about why it is reasonable for us to serve God? Why is it reasonable to give everything you have to Him?

Application: How does God’s worthiness motivate you to serve Him and seek His will? How can you become more spiritually minded? Ask God to give you longing for what is lasting instead of temporary.

For Further Study: Download for free and listen to Donald Barnhouse’s message, “Serving God.” (Discount will be applied at checkout.)

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