Religious Works or Godly Service
Theme: To truly serve the Lord it is necessary for an individual to recognize the difference between a practice of religious works and the discipline of Godly service.
Intro: When you think about serving the Lord what enters your mind? Preaching, teaching, missions, visitation, evangelism, taking care of the Church building, the list can go on and on. Can prayer, meditation and Bible study also be examples of serving the Lord? Do we base our spiritual evaluation of a person on their work load or on their walk? While the Bible tells us, we can know a tree by the fruit it bears, what does that fruit look like? These are questions that really get to the basics of serving God. Finding out what God really expects from us. There are those who feel the church cannot operate unless they are present, there are those who feel they only need to show up on Sunday morning with the attitude here I am preacher bless me if you can. Is serving the Lord a physical work load or is it a spiritual walk, or maybe is it a Godly mixture of the two. Our text shows us two sisters with two entirely different attitudes; Martha accepts a heavy work load while Mary seeks a closer walk. These differing styles cause a conflict not only between the two women but between one of them and the Lord. Jesus has a lesson for Martha and for you and I today. Letís look at three areas that impact Christian service and how Jesus addressed them. Look with me at their...
I.†† Position Vv. 38 Ė 39
†††† A. A standing with the Lord
1. Martha and Mary were both close friends with Jesus.
2. Can we say we are friends with Jesus, or just friendly with Him?
†††† B. A balance with the Lord
††††††††††† 1. Duty
††††††††††† ††† a. Godís work is to be done.
††††††††††† 2. Discipleship
††††††††††† ††† a. To do Godís work is to know Godís will.
II. Priorities Vv. 40 Ė 41
†††† (Faithful undistracted service to God)
†††† A. Distractions of life.
††††††††††† 1. Marthaís preparation, not the Lords.
†††† B. Worries of life.
1. Our expectations are often greater than ††Gods.
†† ††C. Discouragement of life.
III. Placement Vv. 41-42
†††† A. Penitent Ė Unworthy but humbled
†††† B. A disciple Ė Ignorant but eager
†††† C. A receiver Ė Empty but open
Conc. †We may have the greatest intentions as we seek to serve the Lord. But sometimes that is our problem. We seem to seek our intention with Godís blessing upon it. When we have our heart right, our tasks in order and know our place in Godís plan, we will be used to accomplish great things. Let me share a short story. We are hearing a lot about Billy Graham right now, he appears to be in the closing years of his life and Christians are reflecting upon how God has used him. Let me tell you about someone that was used by God in a much greater way. Billy Grahams Sunday school teacher. Billy Graham was met Jesus through his Sunday school teacher. Had she not been submissive to Gods will for her life Billy Graham may have chosen a different path in his own life? You and I have a responsibility to God first this morning. That begins with knowing Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Without this God cannot use you, regardless of your talent, gifts, money or willingness God canít use you if He doesnít know you. Without a saving relationship through Jesus Christ, God does not know you. Secondly, to the Christian you must be willing to be what God wants you to be. This begins with being submissive which develops obedience which results in service. Martha knew Jesus but she was busy trying to impress the Lord with many works while Mary was submissive and obedient growing into a servant of God.
Sunday, March 26, 2006