Lesson 6 -- first quarter 1996
January 7, 1996
© Copyright 1995, Christian Light Publications
Have you and a friend ever had a joint project of some sort? I don't mean something which you two have been told to do, but rather something which you have agreed on your own to do. How did you do your part? What mindset dominated your attitudes and motivations? I ask because I think we are quite inclined toward our own agenda, motives, plans and desires. That was not the way of God's Faithful Servant. In a relationship of equals, the Lord Jesus willingly chose to make Himself a servant!
"Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men" (Philippians 2:6,7).We are called upon to emulate this kind of living. We can chose to impede the working of this mentality in our lives, or we can chose to work with it. That is what Philippians 2:5 means to me. "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus." God wants you and me to serve our equals with the same dedication and abandon that the Lord Jesus served His equal.
"I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart" (Psalm 40:8).
"My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work" (John 4:34).
"I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me" (John 5:30.
"For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me" (John 6:38).
"Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done" (Luke 22:42).
Who is my equal? The answer of the redeemed is "Everyone!" The heart inhabited by the Lowly Divine Servant does not see people in various strata and classes. The regenerated mind expands to enclose everyone in one single group: equals.
How do I serve my equal? First of all, I must serve him with the same zeal and temperament with which I serve the Lord. In one of our "sneak previews" of Judgment Day, the Almighty One proclaims with penetrating simplicity, "Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me" (Matthew 25:40). Do I mean God expects me to be that dedicated in my service to my equals?! Yep.
Furthermore, I must serve my equal with the same ardor and disposition with which I would serve myself. Can you imagine! What would my life and the life of others be like if I served them that way! Oh, it strikes you as unrealistic? Me too. However, I can conceive of no other meaning for Scriptures like these:
"If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well" (James 2:8).
"For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another" (Galatians 5:13).
"Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren" (1 John 3:16).
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