Friday, August 16, 2013

Servant of the Lord: The Album

The apostle Paul settles a controversy in the Corinthians church through the inspiration of the Spirit by pointing out the source of the conflict: the selfish ambition of those in the fight. People were taking sides in the church saying that one teacher was better than another. Paul levels the field concerning the teachers emphasizing their unity by asking, “What then is Apollos? And what is Paul? Servants through whom you believed, even as the Lord gave opportunity to each one.” (1 Corinthians 3:5) 1 Corinthians 4 builds on this fact concerning the church leadership: “Let a man regard us in this manner, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God.” Here we find the first page of a photo album (if you will), a series of snapshots picturing the Servant of the Lord.

The Servant of the Lord is (and some points are worth deeper exploration):
  1. Servant of Christ (1 Cor 4:1)
  2. Steward of the mysteries of God (4:1)
  3.  Trustworthy/faithful (4:2)
  4. Examined/assessed/evaluated by the Lord, not by men (4:3-4)
  5. Obedient to The Master (4:5)
  6. “Does not exceed what is written”; that is, he follows the job description written by God. Why ask more of a man than God? (4:6)
  7. The least of all (4:9)
  8. Condemned to death (4:9)
  9. A spectacle to the world, angels and men alike (4:9)
  10. Fool for Christ’s sake (4:10)
  11. Hungry and thirsty (4:11)
  12. Poorly clothed (4:11)
  13. Roughly treated (4:11)
  14. Homeless (4:11)
  15. Worker with the hands (4:12)
  16. Blesser, when reviled (4:12)
  17. Endurer, when persecuted (4:12)
  18. Encourager When slandered (4:13)
  19. Scum of the world, dregs of all things (4:13)
  20. Admonisher (4:14)
  21. Fatherly in the gospel (4:15)
  22. Model (4:16)
  23. Supporter (4:17)
  24. Teacher (4:17)
  25. Present, engaged (4:18-19)
  26. Conduit of Kingdom Power (4:20)
  27. Shepherd (4:21)

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