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A Servant's Heart Part 2

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer
The Truth Network Radio
March 25, 2022 1:00 am

A Servant's Heart Part 2

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer

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March 25, 2022 1:00 am

What if our vocations and work could reflect Jesus Himself? Jesus turned the world on its head when He stooped to wash the disciples’ feet. Superiors don’t serve inferiors, do they? In the kingdom of God, they do. For us to live like Jesus, we must practice servant leadership. Let’s look at three life-changing lessons that transform our mindset and bring meaning to our service. 

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Marie Morris looking to Jesus. Jesus turned the world on its head when he stooped to wash the disciples superiors don't serve inferior duvet in the kingdom of God. They do let's go out and do what he did and that is to practice servant leadership stable from the Moody Church in Chicago this is with Dr. Sir clear teaching helps us make it across the finish line were learning what happens when Jesus has your heart. What kind of heart are we looking at today when I think of Jesus in the upper room and in his other contact. I'm reminded that life can be very complicated because I think that all of us at times struggle between being humble servant leadership as you described it in the fact that we should also be good soldiers of Jesus Christ.

How do we put all that together will God enables us to do just that. I've written a book entitled the church in Babylon. Now, this book deals with many issues that are within the church today, stressing the fact that yes we should be humble but at the same time we have to be courageous and strong.

One of the chapters is entitled Jesus at the church door prayerless pulpits satisfied saints and spiritual blindness. All of these issues are burdens on my heart and for a gift of any amount. This book can be yours. Go to RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337.

Now let us listen carefully to understand what God is doing in our lives is clearly not committed to our happiness in the sense of giving us all the happiness we possibly can.

He's clearly not committed to simply taking away all the detours and all the roadblocks that we find in life and giving us health and wealth and all of the other things we heard today. These missionary reports about people living in great poverty and, obviously, we should be helping them in their needs, but God is in heaven just simply saying now. I wonder how I can make my creation happier. I wonder how I can make the church happy happy happy. Listen carefully Jesus change the world, but he did not change it by his miracles. He changed it by his suffering and it is in suffering that we glorify God and Jesus knew that that was his mission and washing the disciples feet was a part of the divine program. What did Jesus know he knew his time. He knew his mission. He knew his destination. You'll notice the text says, knowing that the father had put all things under his power and that he had come from God and that he was returning to God. Jesus is saying.

I know that I'm going back to the father and the father has all of eternity to set injustices right. The father has all of eternity. The father and I for us to enjoy each other and to enjoy the people that I have come to redeem the father and I are going to be back together.

Let me ask you a question. Did Jesus please himself when he went to the cross. It's a trick question because you could answer yes or no and maybe be right on both counts. If you understand the distinction, on the one hand, of course, Jesus did exactly what he wanted to do because he wanted to please the father. This is my desire for I always do those things that please him and if it involves the cross so be it.

All except the cross course.

He pleased himself. But Paul your members. As for even Christ. Please, not himself. And the reason is because look at just humanly. This was her rent this hour, through which Jesus had to pass. It was not just the physical pain. It was not just being nailed to a cross people that endured that for centuries. However, excruciating.

It was it was that at that moment he would become identified with your sin and mine. It was at that moment that Fellowship would be broken with the father.

It was at that moment that darkness would be upon the face of the earth because he would be dieting and making a sacrifice for our sins and becoming the sin for us that was the bird that he's wrestled with in Gethsemane and took all the way to the cross but the Scripture also says who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, is now to tell you something. You can go through anything in life you can go through the most excruciating and difficult experience.

Whether it is physical or whether it is emotional you can handle it if you can see God and eternity. If you know it's just for a time that a better day is coming. A better eternity is coming to Jesus knew his destination he was going back to the father that I want to ask your question today.

Does that mean that when Jesus goes back to the father. One thing is sure, he's never going to have to serve again.

That's what I would think if I were writing the Bible. That's what I'd say Jesus came to this earth, he became a servant, and he served and now that he's in heaven nothing but glory nothing but honor nothing but praise. Now folks, one of the reasons that you know that the Bible is the word of God is because it's got stuff in here that no person would ever possibly even think of making up. This is what the Scripture says that Jesus said be ready and dressed for service and keep your lamps burning, like men waiting for their masters to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes he knocks and they can immediately open the door for him. It will be good for those servants whose master spines them watching when he comes.

I tell you the truth that he that is, the master will dress himself to serve will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them to realize that Jesus here is talking about himself really as the master. I have not checked with the experts but I really do think that what it means is that Jesus is going to serve us in the kingdom. And here you and I are too proud to serve one another. The wonder Augustine said, God has humbled himself, but man remains proud Jesus serving his people. Even in the kingdom will see him, possibly as a surface at table. What did Jesus know he knew of course his time. He also knew his mission. He knew his destination.

What life-changing lessons are there from this passage that will change the way in which we view servant hood and hopefully perhaps change the way in which we view our vocation for as long as we live lesson number one is simply this, that it is not what we do.

But who we do it for gives meaning to life and meaning to our service is not what we do we do it for Jesus that it does not matter to me whether I am preaching the sermon on the mount to 5000 people and he did that without a microphone.

It doesn't matter to me whether I'm doing that, or whether I washing the disciples feet.

That is not the point. The point is is my Father glorified. The point is, am I being obedient to what the father wants me to do and that's what the important issue is I desire to please my father and therefore if I please him. I'm willing to do anything no matter how menial you see I told you before that story that legend of the stones that I've to say it right here again member the legend was on the Jesus once asked the disciples to carry some stones nail picked up different stones and they carried them for days and days and days and then Jesus turned them into bread and when they understood that the size of the stone determine the size of a loaf of bread. They kept that in mind. And then Jesus said, carry stones again so they all picked up heavy boulders and finally they walked along and they came to a river and Jesus said just roll them into the river. Let them be gone. The disciples looked at each other and said what's this, and what a waste of energy. What were we doing anyway and then the story goes that Jesus looked at them and said, for whom do you carry the stones. Could you carry them for who you go to work for tomorrow. As you go on to the L to go downtown, who you work for who you put up with for whom do you put up with the difficult situations of life and and the people with whom you work, and they kinds of things that go on in your job that are so difficult as long as you're working for somebody else you're going to be disappointed. You're going to have all of those conflicts and see no meaning in it. But if you say father. This is what you have prescribed this is your will. This is your work over father. I will do this for you all carry the stone for your glory and honor first lesson is it's not what we do. But who we do it for the gives meaning to our lives. Secondly, the deeper we go with God, the deeper we go with God. The lower we are willing to stoop and service.

I really do believe that because the deeper we go with God you say we don't have to worry about what other people think.

Now the real issue is what does the father want me to do and if I'm serving the father in what I'm doing what I'm doing, whether it is significant in the eyes of the world are not really does not matter much. That's the secret you say that's why Christianity as it comes along. It elevates all vocations and will never have a revival in America until every so-called layperson sees his vocation as his opportunity to serve God as long as we think will. It's my opportunity to earn money or it's my opportunity to advance myself or it's marketed that that makes no Christian witness. But when you begin to see that this is your opportunity to serve God. The scrub woman suddenly is exalted in the eyes of God. She is honored in the eyes of God, and God says that this too is service and if done for me is great and wonderful and lasting service because there is no such thing. Then as second-class citizens in the kingdom of heaven, you're doing it for God. The passage of Scripture that was read this morning was Philippians chapter 2 have this mind, which is also in Christ Jesus in you and what is the mind. Well, the preceding verses say esteem others better than yourself, something that's very hard for me to do yet that's what God wants us to do. Many years ago I told you a story that I will tell again and that is when we read promise keepers in that great convention in Atlanta with all of those pastors something like 40,000 of them in that great Atlanta stadium, all singing praises to God, all learning how to be filled with the spirit, all listening to these marvelous messages and then we left. It was about may be old 930 or 10 at night and we went into the Atlanta subway. Hundreds and hundreds of ministers just plugging the system there and all singing amazing grace, how sweet the sound, and singing how great thou art in the whole subway system just vibrating.

We were so filled with the spirit. I think we might've thought that we could just walk through a cement wall and God was there. Then we came to the end of the place where the subway went and we had to wait there for vans to take us to the various hotels where we were staying, and every 10 minutes or so.

This van would pull up. But there'd be dozens may be 20, 40, 50 pastors, all wanting to go to the same hotel all trying to get into a band that holds maybe a dozen people.

I remember we are all filled with the spirit we are all just been singing the praises of God. We all just been hearing messages on servant hood, but was amazing indeed to see is that van pulled up to see pastors jockeying and trying to be the first ones in Nye.

Of course my situation was a little different. I was, I had a slight cold and it was windy so I had a good excuse pastor whirly over here and I might say that pastor whirly at work with him for a dozen years or more. He is one of the most selfless man that I've ever known. That's why, to this very day.

I'm puzzled as to how he got on the same band that I was on.

I don't how you did that I was much and I just know he was there and after we are in the van. I sent everyone.

Well, whatever the filling of the spirit might mean because we had just heard about how to be filled with the spirit. Apparently, it doesn't mean that we esteem others better than cell because if we'd really been filled with the spirit. Nobody would've gotten on the event will you go you go known on all wait for the next van driver would've had to go back empty.

What does it mean to prefer others better than ourselves simple fact is that deeper we go with God, the deeper we go, the lower we are willing to go in loving service and sacrifice to others. There's 1/3 lesson. Let me give it to you and is maybe the bottom line of the whole passage in that is that God's way up is down again at this message saying there's nothing wrong. There's nothing wrong with wanting greatness.

Jesus in fact in that discussion that we will not turn to but you are acquainted with it or they have the discussion as to who will be great in the kingdom. Jesus said to Peter, is least among you, he let him be great. In fact, Christ said that among the Gentiles, that is the pagan. He who rules his great rule over 10,000 people.

That's good. If you rule over 100,000. It's better if you rule over 100 million. It's even better yet and and that's greatness. But Jesus said that's among the Gentiles.

What he said so shall it not be among you, that's the world among you, the person who is great is the person who serves let him learn to serve and that is greatness in the kingdom. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord and he will lift you up. For God resists the proud, but he gives grace much grace to the humble. Nietzsche who predated Hitler and greatly influenced Hitler said that he would believe in the Christian Redeemer. If Christians looked more redeemed now. He had no right to expect that by the way, because he didn't like their Redeemer, and he didn't even like them like believers after they were redeemed, but his statement is penetrating an and and makes us realize that the world is never going to accept us until we are willing to become servants, even in our leadership we have to be servant leaders in our homes to our wives and in our churches. Because if not the world will simply hold its nose and turn us off for the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve and to give his life a ransom for many. And we need to look redeemed many years ago a man by the name of Lavelle wrote, when God intends to fill his soul, he first makes it empty when he intends to enrich his soul, he first makes it poor and when he intends to exult a soul, he first makes it aware of its own miseries. Once and nothing nests. He who is to be great among you, let him serve.

In fact, Jesus said that you can't even enter into the kingdom of heaven. Unless you become like a little child because little children are trusting little children are willing to ask forgiveness little children have an implicit faith that recognizes that total dependence upon their parents they know that if mom and dad didn't take care of me.

I wouldn't be able to do anything and they come with that simplicity and faith.

And Jesus took a little child and put it on his lap and set of such is the kingdom of heaven. What keeps us from fullness in the Christian life. What keeps us from following God. What keeps us in our sin and bound one little word pride in God resists fights against the proud but gives grace to the humble. Let's pray our father, we thank you today for your holy word and we thank you for this marvelous story story that we confess we do not understand well. Jesus washing the feet of his disciples help us Lord to know what that means in our century. In our day in our churches and our families and in our country come strip us father of all of the pretense and the pride that keeps us from humbling ourselves, but in your good time according to your good pleasure which will be exalted.

That Lord, we pray in Jesus name, Amen. You know, my friend, it might well be that one of the reasons we have not been winning a lot of battles in our culture is indeed because of our pride.

We simply do not know how desperately we need God. Now, of course, humility is also important. But as I like to emphasize. It is so important also that we be courageous that we not be cowards when it comes to representing Jesus Christ and so we have a difficult task for which God has prepared us.

I've written a book entitled the church in Babel and I wrote this book to give us hope to help us to understand the culture. Yes, but at the same time to not be intimidated by it but to represent Jesus Christ. Well, for a gift of any amount. It can be yours. Here's what you do go to RTW that's RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337. As a matter fact you can go to the phone right now and you can call 1-888-218-9337 ask for the book the church in Babel and and thanks in advance for helping us is running to win continues to share the gospel around the world. It's time again for you to ask Pastor Luke certain a question about the Bible or the Christian life. What do you do when people abuse your generosity listener from Connecticut asks, I have a great heart for compassion, but it seems anyone who comes to my church is in need latches onto me.

It seems overwhelming at times. I helped with many events that are church to benefit those in need, but sometimes I feel used. It seems that I burden myself and trying to help others.

One example is that I do personalized Bible verse plaques.

I recently offered to each one of church one free plaque per person. But one lady who was known around the church for always being the first in line for food and handouts has asked me for six plaques.

I'm looking for some advice. Will my dear sister the device that I'm going to give you is simply give her one and tell her that that was the bargain that you can provide to six for every one you know as I read your letter.

I thought to myself I wonder if may be the reason that you exercise your gift of compassion is so that you might get attention and so that you might be well thought of how that of course they come to you as a surprise because we need people in our churches with the gift of compassion, but it seems as if you are taking upon yourself more burdens of other people than God intended you to bear and sometimes those who have the gift of compassion do it because that they receive a great deal of satisfaction by meeting other people's needs and also being thought of as being so compassionate and so generous.

I simply throw that in.

And the reason I thought of that is because you should have the strength to be able to say no to people good to be compassionate but when people use you. You need boundaries so exercise some of those boundaries and simply say I decided that I would make one for people but I can't do six. Be kind and when people come in they expect things from you that you cannot give them simply tell them that and you will be free people will still appreciate you because you'll have the bless them, to the extent that you are able, but on the other hand, you won't be jeopardizing your own time in your own health by unreasonable requests. So my sister a stand your ground.

Use compassion, but also use compassion combined with some courage.

God bless you some wise counsel. As always, from Dr. Erwin Blitzer thank you pastor Luther if you'd like to hear your question answered. Go to our and click on ask pastor Luther or call us at 1-888-218-9337 that's 1-888-218-9337 you can write to us at running to win 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 all of us pick up a lot of dust in the race of life dust that clogs the pores of our soul. We need to come to Christ for cleansing every day.

Next time I'm running to win we go again to the upper room to learn what that process is all about and why for a believer. It's not optional. Thanks for listening for Dr. Erwin Blitzer this is Dave McAllister running to win is sponsored by the teacher

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