Oct 15th, 2014 by winfieldeastsidebaptistchurch
Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life
by Donald Whitney
Service…for the purpose of godliness: Chapter 7
The Discipline of Service
Ø “When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die.” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Ø “It’s costly service. God asks for your life. He doesn’t want servants who offer Him the leftovers after their other commitments.” - Whitney
Ø “We’re drawn to the appeal of service when it holds out the promise of bold adventure…but it seems that far more commonly Christ’s call is to a death by degrees, washing feet in obscurity.” – Whitney
Ø “Like our worship and evangelism, so also our service should flow from within–without any need of discipline–as a result of the life-transforming presence and work of the Holy Spirit.” – Whitney
Ø “But…because of the persistent gravitational tendencies toward selfishness in our hearts, we must also discipline ourselves to serve.” – Whitney
Service Is Expected
Ø Motivated by Obedience
Ø Motivated by Gratitude
Ø Motivated by Gladness
Ø Motivated by Forgiveness, not Guilt
Ø Motivated by Humility
Ø Motivated by Love
And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. (2 Cor. 5:15, NIV)
Ø What keeps us from serving God and others?
Ø In what ways do we tend to serve for the wrong motives?
Ø What are some practical ways that we can serve inside and outside the church?
Gifted to Serve
Ø Spiritual Gifts
ü At Salvation by the Holy Spirit
ü To every Christian
ü Sovereignly bestowed
ü Various and diverse gifts
ü For the benefit of the body of Christ
ü For the glory of God
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God's grace in its various forms. (1 Pet. 4:10, NIV)
“The most significant gifts in the church’s life in every era are ordinary natural abilities sanctified.” – J. I. Packer
Ø Serving is often hard work.
ü Spiritual giftedness does not mean it will not be work.
ü Service that costs nothing accomplishes nothing.
ü Service is rewarding work.
ü Service for God is enduring and valuable work.
Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain. (1 Co. 15:58, NIV)
God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them. (Heb. 6:10, NIV)
Ø Why do we tend to overlook some spiritual gifts in favor of others?
Ø Why do we sometimes think that our service is not accomplishing anything?
Ø Worship empowers serving; serving expresses worship. Godliness requires a disciplined balance between the two.
Ø You are expected and gifted to serve, but will you serve?
Ø The gospel of Christ creates Christlike servants.