Today Derek begins a teaching about servanthood—being a servant. He takes as his model the roles of the Godhead—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. In referring to passages that concern Jesus, we see in Him One who came to earth in humility, to serve and not to be served. We must strive to use Christ's example and, in submission, learn to serve one another.
Now I’m going to deal with my subject for the first part of this meeting which is Being A Servant, and I think it’s one of the most neglected themes in the contemporary church. In fact, there’s a kind of very negative attitude in many people about the idea of being a servant. “I don’t want to be a servant. I don’t want to be serving anybody else. I’m a person on my own right.” I can’t remember how many granddaughters I have—but I had two that were living at one time or another with me and they’re both committed Christians, but as I listen to them talk I heard that they had been brainwashed in school in the whole educational system—one in America and one in Britain. And that they’d been learned to think self-centered. Everything in their curriculum was how to develop yourself, how to express yourself, how to be a significant kind of person. And I realized that we have a tremendous barrier of secular education in this generation to overcome to get a clear and Scriptural picture of what the Bible says about being a servant.
Let me say this. You show me a self-centered person and I will show you a dissatisfied person. Because there is nothing in self that can fully satisfy us. And there’re lot of Christians, who are Christians, but they’re self-centered. You’ll find they’re frustrated. They’re always running around to some new teaching or some new meeting, they never find full satisfaction and full expression because they are centered in themselves.
Now let’s talk a little bit about what the Bible says about being a servant, and I think it will astonish some of you. First of all servant-hood is divine and eternal. It didn’t start with humanity. It started in God. It didn’t start in time. It started in eternity. I want to say that again. Servant-hood is divine, Godly and it’s eternal. Let’s look first of all in Matthew chapter 12 and verse 18 and following. Now I’m taking Jesus as the pattern servant. You see God is revealed to us in Scripture as three in one. Some people don’t like the word Trinity so never mind, don’t bother with it. But there are three persons in the Godhead; the Father, the Son and the Spirit. And the Son is the servant of the Father, and the Spirit is the servant of the Son and the Father. So servant-hood is in the nature of God Himself. Being a servant is one of the most Godly things that you can ever be. It doesn’t mean you’re inferior or second-rate. It means you’re following a divine pattern. Now this is what is says in Matthew’s Gospel chapter 12 verses 16 and following.
“But when Jesus knew it, He withdrew from there. And great multitudes followed Him, and He healed them all.”
He withdrew. He didn’t press Himself forward in the face of opposition and criticism; He just bowed and said, “Alright, carry on. Do you thing. I’ll do God’s thing.”
And He warned them not to make Him known,
And He was not seeking fame or popularity contrary to the ambitions of many contemporary Christians.
That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying:
“Behold [now this is God the Father speaking] Behold My Servant whom I have chosen,”
Who was God’s servant? Jesus. I didn’t hear you. JESUS. That’s right.
“My Beloved in whom My soul is well pleased!
I will put My Spirit upon Him,
And he will declare justice to the Gentiles. [to the nation]
He will not quarrel nor cry out,
Nor will anyone hear His voice in the streets.”
He’s not going to assert Himself. He’s not going to push Himself forward. He’s going to simply allow the very nature of His being to express itself. And those who are seeking truth will come to Him. And then it says,
“He will not quarrel nor cry out,
Nor will anyone hear His voice in the streets. [Listen this is good news.]
A bruised reed He will not break,
And smoking flax He will not quench,”
Maybe you don’t understand those, but a reed is something that grows tall and straight. But if it’s bruised it loses it straightness, it loses its strength and most people would just throw it away. But Jesus does not break a bruised reed. There are a lot of bruised reeds here tonight. Because of things in your past you don’t have the strength, you don’t have the confidence, you don’t have the ability that you need. You’re a bruised reed. Somebody might crush you. Jesus will not crush you. You know what He’ll do? He’ll heal you.
And then, smoking flax, of course they used lamps fed with oil and wicks. And when a wick wasn’t really working instead of giving a clear light, it would give out smoke. And that’s a picture of a lamp going out. Many people would just take the wick out and throw it away. But Jesus restores the wick. Some of you here tonight are smoking wicks. You really can’t give out a clear light because there are things in your life that inhibit you. But Jesus isn’t going to throw you away. He’s going to restore a pure clear light to you. That’s Jesus. Can you say Amen? AMEN.
And then in Matthew chapter 20 and verse 28 it says,
“The Son of Man...”
that’s Jesus. And you know the title The Son of Man is used about forty times in the gospel, much more than the Son of God. Jesus was both the Son of God and the Son of Man. But the title He liked best was the Son of Man. He identified with humanity. And then it says here,
“the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”
That’s the Spirit of Jesus. He does not come to be served, He comes to serve. And anyone who has the Spirit of Jesus will have the same attitude—not seeking to be served, but to serve. That’s the mark of the divine nature. I want to say that again. Servant-hood did not begin in time, it did not begin with humanity, it began in God and it began in eternity.
And then with regard to the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit is the Servant of God the Father and God the Son. Jesus is the Servant of the Father and the Holy Spirit is the Servant of the Father and the Son. In John 14 verses 16 and 17, Jesus say to His disciples,
“And I will pray the Father, and he will give you another Helper, [or in the old translation a Comforter] that He may abide with you forever-even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.”
So the Father is going to send as His Servant, the Holy Spirit. And then a little further on in John 16 and verse 7 Jesus says,
“Nevertheless I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper [that’s the Holy Spirit] will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you.”
So the Holy Spirit is the Servant of God the Father and God the Son who’s sent to help us. Servant-hood is in His divine eternal nature. And then let’s look at the heavenly beings. This is one of my favorite passages because it is the message I heard the first time I ever went to a Pentecostal service. Isaiah chapter 6 verses 1, 2 and 3. Isaiah 6:1, 2, 3.
“In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the LORD sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the temple.”
Above it stood seraphim;
Now seraphim is the Hebrew plural of the word seraph and seraph is directly related to the Hebrew word for fire. In fact, a fire in Hebrew today is called a serapha(?). So the seraphim are burning, fiery creatures. And then it says,
“Each one had six wings: with two he covered his face, with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew.”
Very interesting apportionment of their wings. For me covering the face is worship. Covering the feet is worship. Flying is service. But in the heavenly scheme of things they give twice as much time to worship as they do to service. And I think probably we need to do the same. Service that does not come out of worship does not really fulfill God’s purpose.