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I Choose Love - Love Serves, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
September 26, 2023 6:00 am

I Choose Love - Love Serves, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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September 26, 2023 6:00 am

In our pursuit of greatness in God's eyes, we tend to imagine following Jesus into ever-increasing, upward levels of maturity. In this program, Chip poses the fascinating premise that we actually follow Jesus, descending into greatness.


Who is the most authentically humble person that you know?

And what is it about that person's attitude, their concern for others, their approach to life that makes them so attractive? Here's the question, would you like to be like that? I want to be like that. And today, we together can learn how.

Stay with me. Living on the Edge is an international teaching and discipleship ministry focused on helping Christians live like Christians. And I'm really eager for you to hear Chip's message today from his series, I Choose Love. He'll identify a clear path for us to follow to become great in God's eyes. What's fascinating is these steps don't lead us toward more power, prestige, or possessions.

So where do they lead? Well, for that answer, here's Chip for part two of his talk, Love Serves, from Philippians chapter two. A bondservant in Jewish and in Roman culture had no rights. You might have a number of servants in the house. The bondservant is the guy that picks up the doo-doo. He's the guy that empties the trash.

He's the guy that has zero rights, no anything anywhere at any time. Could you just pause for a moment? Could you imagine? I mean, when you think of how we cling to our rights, how come they didn't do that for me?

Don't they know who I am? Can you imagine the creator of the universe taking the form of a bondservant, and it says he's made in the likeness of a man. The word likeness is our word schema.

This is the word that means just the outward fashion of, the appearance of. And he was fully human, except he wasn't like all other men. There's no sin nature. Jesus, everything he did, he said, follow me, model this. I can do nothing apart from him. His entire life was I'm dependent on the Father and in the power of the Holy Spirit to live this life so you can follow behind me and you be dependent on the Father and the power of the Holy Spirit. And he did that because he loves you. He did that to rescue mankind.

He descended into greatness. You want to have a mindset? You want to embrace the mindset with regard to your position, right? We all have one.

We do. And prestige, you know, like what makes me a somebody. Let me give you three characteristics of the mindset of a servant. You might jot these down and then think about how they might play out in your home, in your driving, at work.

Characteristic number one, no job is too low. Why? Because you're a servant.

There's trash on the ground. Pick it up. Why? You're a servant. No recognition is required. No one needs to know who you are. No one needs to say, oh wow, you're no recognition. You don't have to casually, like I certainly do at times, tell people that you know so and so or you work so and so. See, you don't have to bring recognition to yourself. No job too low. No recognition needed.

No thanks required. You know, when a servant would do his job, no one said, oh wow, thanks so much. He's a servant. That's what he's supposed to do, serve all the rest of us. You see, it's a mindset. Can you imagine what it would be like to be married to someone who thought their job was to serve their mate? Can you imagine a mom or dad who thought that the whole goal of their life was to serve their children in a way to help them be responsible and to grow up? Can you imagine what it would be like to have a boss or a supervisor who saw himself not as the head and the requirement and got mad when people didn't get their deliverables, but I'm going to serve you and help you be successful and maybe the best way to serve some of you is help you find another place. Because you struggle.

This isn't what you were intended for. But the mindset isn't you hack me off, get out of here. I want to serve you. Well, those are the three characteristics of a servant's mindset.

Can you take any more? Let me give you three characteristics of what makes great servants. Number one, they observe needs. See, real servants realize I'm not here for people to serve me and so they observe needs. If you've ever been to a very good restaurant and the waiter or the waitress, do you ask for water? They're there.

You ask for a second of this. I mean, they're watching your table and they observe needs. When you stand up and when you're here, do you just go and talk to someone you know? Are you observing? I wonder what the needs are. I wonder how things are going here. I wonder if they need help in the children's ministry. I wonder if they need help over here.

Who might need? Servants have this mindset of there might be some needs I can fulfill. Second is they take initiative. You don't have to ask them.

They just take initiative. Oh wow, there's a need? I'll fill it. I'll take care of that.

I'll do that. And third, they don't draw attention to themselves. Now, that's pretty different, isn't it? That's what Jesus did. And he loved deeply and better and that's why he's the greatest human being who ever lived because he was a human being.

Fully God, but a human being. That's how he viewed position and prestige. Finally, we become truly great when we embrace Christ's mindset toward productivity. Ask yourself, what did he really accomplish?

Quite a bit, huh? Being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Underline the word humbled himself, put a box around becoming obedient, and then circle death and circle on a cross.

Jesus descended from the supreme creator and ruler to taking on human flesh, to being a servant, to making his life a sacrifice, to dying for us, and then to die in the most humiliating way known to mankind. Now, here's what you need to get, especially those with a sensitive conscience, which I really appreciate. The way to eliminate your pride is not to focus on how arrogant you are. It's not to walk out of here and go, you know, I think of myself and I'm really into position and yes, I think my possessions make me a someone, blah, blah, blah, blah.

No, don't go there. When you try and get rid of pride out the window, it comes back in the door. If you get it out the door, it'll come back into the attic. You know how you can become a humble person? It's really, really easy. Obey. You obey your way to humility because humility isn't some feeling. Humility is considering others more important than yourself. So what do you do? You act on the truth that these people are actually more important than me.

Therefore, my time will go toward helping others, my money is going to go toward helping others, and my talents will go toward helping others. And more than some kind of feeling, you do what Jesus did. He acted on it. And by the way, just a little note, put a little star, he didn't feel like it. Do you remember the garden?

Emotionally. Jesus didn't, you know, love is giving another person what they need the most when they deserve it the least at great personal cost. Jesus was not in the garden going, Father, from eternity past, we're going to save him. This is great. Holy Spirit, I want to high five you. I'm going to go to the cross.

We're going to do this. Oh Father, oh Father, if there be any way, not my will but yours be done, but if there's a plan B, a plan C, I don't want to do this. I don't want to be separated from you. I don't want the cost. I don't want the pain. I don't want to do this, nevertheless.

Can I tell you something? When you don't feel like reading the Bible and read it, when you don't feel like praying and pray, when you don't feel like giving and give, when you give time and you care, when you're tired and say, I don't feel like it, I don't feel like it. I don't think you're being a hypocrite. I think you're probably more pleasing to God than almost any other time in your life. It takes a lot more faith to obey when you don't feel like doing it.

You are living in such a feel oriented culture. I'm kind of tired. I don't feel like reading. I'm kind of tired.

I don't know if I can make it to the small group. I'm kind of tired. I'm so worn out. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. How did Jesus feel? He was beat within an inch of his life.

They crushed thorns into his skull. Love serves. I choose love. I choose to serve. And something supernatural happens when that occurs. Humility grows by obedience.

If someone came to you and said, I've got a proposition for you. I know everything that's going to happen today. I know what the stock market's going to be at the end of the day. I know what's going to happen in your 11 o'clock meeting.

I know the email that you're going to get 215 that's going to rock your world. I know the news at 4 o'clock and I know what's going to happen the moment you walk in the door with your family. And I'd like to maybe get 15 at least 30 minutes and have a really good talk to prepare you so you can respond in each one of those situations in exactly the way that you ought to for the best results to bring about the most good for you and them.

Could you spare 30 minutes to do that? Who wouldn't do that, right? Isn't that the invitation of Jesus to you? Isn't the invitation the creator of the world died in your place, experienced shame to give you a relationship?

And just hear my heart. I completely don't understand this. I cannot fathom a child of God who loves God that doesn't have time to meet with his creator.

Whose only goal is to express his love, to draw you near, to renew your mind, to give you grace, to go through what you're going to go through. And you say you don't have time for him, but you do Facebook. You don't have time for him, but you live on your phone. You don't have time for him, but you got lots of hobbies. You don't have time for him, but your kid's on the traveling team. You don't have time for him, but have I made my point?

Have you got it? I want to really ask you. If you walk out these doors and go, I want to be more humble. I intend to be more humble.

You will not be humble. You act your way into humility. Obedience is the pathway to humility. Humility is about considering others, people more important than yourself. So let's do a quick test and then we're going to get to something very exciting like the really wonderful side of the rewards of humility. Here's the test. How other centered are you? Okay, get out your device or devices and just scroll through the last two or three weeks and how many names and times on your devices are about serving other people and how many are about you.

That'll tell you. You're listening to Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram. We'll return to Chip's message in just a minute. But let me quickly share with you God has called us to do incredible ministry work all around the world. And when you partner with us financially, you're part of what we do. So join us today by going to We appreciate whatever God leads you to give.

Well, with that, here's Chip. Second is go home, pull up your bank statement and a couple of your credit cards and look at where your money went and ask yourself how much of the money entrusted to you, because it's not yours and it's not mine, went to expressing your love to God and to helping other people and how it went to you and to service your debt. See, the reason Jesus talks so much about money is because it's at the core, it's the MRI. If you want to know where your heart's at, it's not how you sing a song.

It's not how often you come to church. If you want to know where your heart's at, you know, it's like the old thing, just follow the money. And so the reason he says and taught them, look, the first 10 percent, just so you know that I own it and you don't, you write that check to me. But if you live on a bit of a budget and you decide how much is enough, then over and above that how much is enough, you begin to share and give and love. And then what he says is I keep descending into greatness.

All these people's lives change and people get loved and people come to Christ and they experience the life of Christ. See, my money tells me whether I'm humble or whether I'm about me. And then I ask myself, what about my talent? Where's my talent going?

I mean, my energy. Did you know in Christendom, 50 percent of all the people that go to Bible believing churches do not give anything of their time or their money. And I would love to say our church is a big exception. It's not.

It's exactly that same place. And by the way, if you look at our numbers, we don't need your money. I mean, we could do a lot more. But here, my challenge is you want to be a servant, then serve. Get your priorities in order. Get your time in order. You can't do anything I'm talking about unless God speaks to you and strengthens you. Your priorities will never get right until your finances get right.

And if you think there's any ulterior motive, give it somewhere else. But maturity, joy, power, love demands humility that requires obedience. Now, just before you think, oh my lance, I want to tell you something that makes all this worthwhile. Are you ready?

The next and last point is we experience the reward of true greatness when we follow Christ's example of servanthood. Now, remember I said everyone wants to be great. Are you ready? Okay. How great do you really want to be?

Okay. How great do you really want to be? Because if you are willing to take your position, your possessions, your prestige, your power and say I'm a steward of that and I'm going to use that humbly as God directs to serve and to love God and to love others.

Here's the promise. Christ will exalt you. He always exalts those who practice humility. In fact, notice here's the example from Jesus.

For this reason, what reason? This descending into greatness also God highly exalted him. Literally it super exalted him. And he bestowed on him the name which is above every name. Why? So that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow.

Where? Of those who are in heaven, of those who are in earth and those who are under earth and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ and put a box around Lord. The word is Yahweh. He's referring back to Isaiah 45, 23 where God Yahweh says I am the one and every knee will bow before me. If you want a passage, God the Father is Lord, Jesus is Lord. And notice the reason.

For the glory of God. You know, Mother Teresa didn't own a whole lot. And there's people that have built huge, huge things. But we remember Mother Teresa.

Why? She just loved people. And she loved people that no one cared about. And God exalted her.

As you humble yourself, as we as a church like never before humble ourselves by being obedient, God will exalt you. What would it be worth? What would it be worth to have a deep, loving, connected family?

Deep, loving, connected friendships? Be the person that changes the entire culture where you work or your neighborhood. See, God gave Jesus the greatest position and the greatest name. Now, here's the deal.

We need to apply this very specifically and I want to do it very soberly. For those of you who are here and you are a follower of Christ, you're absolutely certain that you are in God's family. You've trusted Christ at a certain point in time. You were convicted of your sin and your lifestyle. You realize that you needed to be forgiven and saved by a holy God. And you extended the empty hands of faith and said, I turned from my past life and I asked Jesus to come into my life and forgive me for my sin. I believe you died in my place and rose from the dead.

If you're one of those people, here's the question. Your knee is going to bow and you are going to confess him as Lord. My question is, is he Lord today? If you have never said, I'm all in and saying whatever that means, my geography, my family, my money, my dreams, I may be a little scared. In fact, if you're not a little scared, you don't know what I'm talking about. But I'm going to trust God and I'm going to stand up and I'm going to publicly declare he is my Lord.

He will call the shots from this moment on. And if you've never done that, I'll ask you to stand. And I will tell you, you will experience power, some difficulty and some joy and reward that you've never experienced. And you will find yourself having to get into God's word because he'll begin using your life. There's another group of you that you're here and you're exploring and you wouldn't claim necessarily to be a Christian or you're not really sure if you are in the family or out of the family. You're a good person, a moral person. You're visiting a church.

But if you died today, you are not absolutely certain that you would spend eternity with Christ. Every person is going to bow the knee and you will profess Jesus is Lord. Option A is that if you haven't done that, you bow the knee and you humble your heart and you say, I need you God. Will you forgive me? I want to turn from sin.

I ask you to come into my life and I want to follow you. Option B is you say, no, not ready to do that. Maybe later. I don't want anyone telling me what to do. I'm not sure about this God stuff.

If that's good for you guys, fine. I'm going to do my own thing. The day will come when you will bow your knee. And instead of joy looking at your savior in absolute dismay and distress, you'll go, oh, I remember when I was in that church and I heard God's voice. And I may never hear it again like this.

I so wish I could go back, but you can't. And he brought you into this room on this day to forgive your sins and give you a new life. God wants you to be great. He wants you to be great.

He just wants you to descend into greatness. The acid test of greatness is love. This is about being loving people. The road to greatness.

Have you got this word down now? It's humility. The road to greatness is considering others more important than yourself.

And finally, the opportunity for greatness. It's serving. It's serving in the church. It's serving at home. It's saying, I'm a servant. No job is too low. I'm a servant.

I'm available. I'm a servant. I don't need recognition. I want to be a part of the change agent. I'm not someone who comes and sits and observes and intellectually believes the things that everyone intellectually believes. I'm a servant.

God, just show me where to plug in. Before we go any further today, I'm going to bring you back to that very important Option A and Option B I talked about at the close of the program. Because God has said it will happen. Every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. And Option A is that people will do that willfully, joyfully, that they will recognize that God, the Son, who made all that there is, who came and died in your place and my place for the sins of the whole world, who rose from the dead, who's seated at the right hand of the Father, is opening his arms and saying, Come unto me. Let me love you and forgive you.

I came that you might have life and have it abundantly. Option B is for those who say, I don't want that. I'll control my life.

No one's going to tell me what to do. And we don't always say it that harshly. Sometimes we say it like, We'll all get around to the God thing later.

Or, you know, I think that's probably true, but I'm going to do some stuff that I think is really fun right now and maybe later. Or maybe you're one of those people that are literally shaking your fist in the face of God and saying, No one and nothing is going to rule over me because you have a warped view of God or had a bad religious experience. We don't talk about this much in our day, but I want you to know there is a reality of eternity. And God sent the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. And whoever believes in Him has eternal life. The one that has the Son has life. The one that does not have the Son of God does not have life. There are two endings. A group of people that God will say to them, Your will be done. And you will be separated from Him forever and ever and ever. And there's a group that will say to God, Your will be done.

Forgive me. I bow my knee and I do it voluntarily. I don't know where you're at, but here's my prayer. That at this day, on this moment, you would be an Option A person. That you would recognize that the way you're living your life independent of God is not working.

It doesn't work now and it won't work later. And you would surrender your heart and your life at this very minute and say, Lord Jesus, forgive me. Come into my life. I acknowledge you as the Lord, the Savior, the Creator of the world, and I want to follow you. I believe you died in my place.

You rose from the dead. I receive you as my Savior. Make me your son.

Make me your daughter. And then I want to tell you to get on your phone and text the best Christian you know and tell them what you just did. And then go to

That's It's very easy to find and we have some resources to help you in your brand new life. Now find a good church this weekend that teaches the Bible and get on the journey. If you prayed with Chip, we do have a free resource we'd like to put in your hands that was uniquely created for new believers. It's a tool that will help you gain a clear biblical understanding of what it means to trust in Jesus. Request this free resource by calling 888-333-6003 or by visiting, then clicking the New Believers button.

That's or call 888-333-6003. Let us help you get started in your faith journey. Well, Chip's still with me in studio, and Chip, you know we're really excited about a new book we've helped develop called Not Beyond Reach by Aaron Pearce. And really, this resource is unlike any other one we've produced because it highlights a serious issue that we as believers must address. Would you take a few minutes and talk a little bit more about that?

Absolutely, Dave. I just have to say, I've been involved for the last five years with a church filled with millennials and Gen Zs. We've had them in our home, we've had discussions, and I just have to tell you, I'm deeply concerned about young people. More personally, like most people listening, I'm most deeply concerned about the young people closest to me, my kids, my grandkids.

And I'm meeting moms and dads here and across the country who all keep telling me the same story. My kids are drifting away from the Lord, I don't know what to do, I don't have a plan, I don't understand where they're coming from. And what I can tell you is this brand new book by Aaron Pearce that we've worked on together will give you a map, a blueprint, a game plan, to not just connect with your kids or grandkids, but to really understand them and connect them, more importantly, with the Lord Jesus Christ. Can't emphasize enough how important it is, get this book, get educated, then put it into practice.

Thanks Chip. To get your hands on this brand new book, Not Beyond Reach, visit or the Chip Ingram app. Discover the simple process you can follow to share the Gospel with those who question or outright reject Jesus. Place your order for this insightful new book, Not Beyond Reach, by going to or the Chip Ingram app. As we close, are you looking to get even more plugged in with Living on the Edge and our resources? Then let me encourage you to check out the Chip Ingram app. You can listen to our most recent series, sign up for daily discipleship and more. We want to help you grow in your walk with Jesus, and the Chip Ingram app is a great way to immerse yourself in godly, enriching content. From all of us here, I'm Dave Drouie, thanking you for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-10-29 13:38:18 / 2023-10-29 13:49:01 / 11

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