We Value Service

Johnny Kjaer November 11, 2018 Ephesians 4:16
Outline

Stewardship is God-given responsibility with accountability

The Four Factors of Stewardship

1. God owns everything – you own nothing

2. God has entrusted you with everything you have

3. You can either increase or diminish what God has given – he wants you to increase it

4. God can call you into account at any time and it may be today

John 13:12-17 - So when He had washed their feet, and taken His garments and reclined at the table again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? You call Me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for so I am. If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you. Truly, truly, I say to you, a slave is not greater than his master, nor is one who is sent greater than the one who sent him. If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.”

5 lessons on the importance of serving

I. Christ Is the Head of the Body

Ephesians 4:15-16 - …we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

Ephesians 1:18-23 - I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.

II. The Body of Christ Is Joined Together

Ephesians 4:16 - …from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies…

Romans 12:4-5 - For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.

III. Each Person in the Body Has a Responsibility To Carry Out Their Role

Ephesians 4:16 - …according to the proper working of each individual part…

IV. The Church Grows and Is Strengthened Because of Serving

Ephesians 4:16 - …causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

V. Our Serving Is Motivated by Love

Ephesians 4:16 - …causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

Matthew 14:14 - When He went ashore, He saw a large crowd, and felt compassion for them and healed their sick.

Mark 6:34 - When Jesus went ashore, He saw a large crowd, and He felt compassion for them because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and He began to teach them many things.

John 3:16 - For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.

Those of you have been a part of Faith Church for some time are probably very familiar with the concept of Stewardship Month.  For those that are new to our church let me introduce the idea to you.  For the four Sundays leading up to the Sunday before Thanksgiving we turn our attention to the idea of how are we stewarding the things that God has entrusted us with. 

Stewardship is – God-given responsibility with accountability.

So we regularly review The Four Factors of Stewardship.

1. God owns everything – you own nothing.

2. God has entrusted you with everything you have.

3. You can either increase or diminish what God has given – he wants you to increase it.

4. God can call you into account at any time and it may be today.

This year we have decided to call our study of Ephesians 4:11-16 for Stewardship Month, The Values of the Body of Christ.

Through this study we will learn 4 key lessons.

We value equipping.

We value unity.

We value doctrine.

We value service.

In John 13 we are told a very important story that certainly becomes the setup to an incredible lesson that Jesus was wanting to teach to his disciples and it turn to us.

You see in those days when you traveled you would walk every where that you went. 

  • The roads were dusty.
  • They shared the roads with animals, so the roads weren’t exactly clean.
  • When you entered the house
    • A servant or representative from the house should greet you and wash your feet.
    • If there was no representative then the lowest ranking member of the traveling group should do the serving.
  • The disciples and Jesus enter the room and no one washes anyone else’s feet.
    • The disciples seemed to argue some over who was most important.
    • So they all just sit down waiting for some one else to serve them.
  • Suddenly Jesus stands up and takes the basin of water and a towel
    • He begins washing their feet
    • They didn’t like he was doing it.
    • Peter challenges Jesus
  • After He had washed their feet he sits down and says this.
    • John 13:12–17 12 So when He had washed their feet, and taken His garments and reclined at the table again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? 13 “You call Me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for so I am. 14 “If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15 “For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you. 16 “Truly, truly, I say to you, a slave is not greater than his master, nor is one who is sent greater than the one who sent him. 17 “If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.
  • Did you notice what He said in verse 17?
    • If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.
    • There is joy in serving others.
    • He was seated at the right hand of God
    • He is above all earthly rule, authority, or power.
    • He is above everything.
    • And He is placed as the head of the church which is His body.
    • So He is the head of the body which is the church.
    • We should value serving
    • We should want to share the Gospel with others
    • We should serve those around us to point towards the excellency of Christ.
  • Like samples at Sams
    • You get a little taste of what is there so you will want to buy the big bag.
    • We should be showing in the way we function as the church the beauty of what it is like to be a part of the body of Christ, so when they see even the little bit of goodness we can display they will want the bigger joys of being in Christ.
  • What are the gifts or abilities that God has given you that you can use for His glory?
  • Did you notice he serves on a regular weekly basis.
  • Did you notice he also serves in regular yearly serving opportunities.
    • Living Nativity trailers
  • Did you notice he also serves in things that come up and need someone to serve in them?
    • Restoration volunteering to till land, pour concrete, etc.
  • Are you holding back because you do not feel you have enough talents?
  • Are you keeping your talents to yourself?
  • Are you willing to be stretched in order to maximize your talents?
  • I was working at the church as a janitor
  • We did not have a lot of friends
    • Mostly our only friends were some family that lived in town.
  • We signed up to serve in the Living Nativity
    • It was the first time we felt connection with our church family

With that in mind please take your Bibles and turn with me to Ephesians 4:11-16, that is page 159 of the back section of the Bible located under the chair in front of you.

Today we will be talking about The Importance of Valuing Service.  We will be looking specifically for 5 Lessons on the Importance of Serving.

Please join me as I read Ephesians 4:11-16.

Ephesians 4:11–16 (NASB95)

11 And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ. 14 As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; 15 but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

Let’s Pray!

The first lesson we can learn about the importance of serving is that

  • Christ is the Head of the Body (15-16)
  • The Body of Christ is Joined Together (16)
    • The body is never to be divided.
    • If the body is divided in some way then the body is not able to function in the way that it is intended to function.
    • Think of the most basic of things that you have to do in your life.  How important is it that your body have to be unified in order to accomplish task?
      • Have you ever had one of those moments where you were trying to do something and your body just did not quite work together how you needed it to?
      • You know when your foot doesn’t pick up quite high enough and you stumble over the flat carpet in front of a bunch of people.
        • Then you have to try to recover from in in the least embarrassing way possible.
        • Or act like you meant to do it.
        • Does anyone else practice the most mundane things just to make sure your body is ready for it?
          • I actually practice simple things like walking up to the stage to preach. (Hey stepping over cables and around speakers can be pretty intimidating)
    • Do you view your attendance as being important or just something to do if there is nothing better to do on Sunday morning?
    • Do you view your involvement in church as optional? Is that consistent with being a unified member of the body of Christ?
    • Do you view others within the church as part of the same body? Or are you full of jealousy, envy or rivalry towards them?
      • Well let me tell you how I would do things differently than them.
      • Let me gossip about the decision they made and how I see it as being wrong.
      • Listen to what so and so said, did, etc.
    • How important is it to you that you seek the unity of the body of Christ?
  • Each Person in the Body Has a Responsibility to Carry Out Their Role. (16)
    • Maybe music is your thing
    • Maybe watching children is your thing
    • Maybe sweeping is your thing
    • Maybe being friendly is your thing
    • Maybe building things
    • Maybe driving big vehicles
    • Maybe you can do a lot of things
    • Maybe you only do one thing well
    • Passion Play backstage director
    • Snow shoveling with the teens.
  • The Church Grows and Is Strengthened because of Serving. (16)
    • Last year over 9,000 people heard the Gospel in those 6 nights.
    • We usually have between 8,500 and 10,000 people every year.
    • There are 2 different approaches to a serving activity like this.
      • 1.It is such a busy time of year.
        • I will miss so much if I give up 3 nights in one weekend to serve in this way.
        • I mean there are Hallmark movies on during that time period.
        • I don’t really know anybody else who is serving.
      • 2.  I cannot wait to get out there and share the Gospel with a bunch of people who will come through tonight.
        • I can dress up and pretend I am living in that time period.
        • I can build a fun family tradition of serving in the Living Nativity.
        • I may meet someone new and be able to encourage them to grow in their walk with the Lord.
    • Now I realize you may not be able to serve at the Living Nativity.  I know some people in this room pull some pretty significant serving loads for other Christmas time ministry opportunities.
      • But what is your attitude when you hear about these opportunities.
    • We got to laugh with others.
    • We had some people learn who we were and we learned who some other people were.
    • It strengthened our love for serving with our church.
  • Our serving is motivated by love (16)
    • I have the privilege of serving in a lot of different roles within the church (as is the general expectations of the Pastors and interns of Faith Church)
    • One of the roles I get to do is directing the large outreach productions our church puts on.
      • Living Nativity
      • Passion Play
    • I first came upon these opportunities because there was a need for Pastoral oversight for them and I told Pastor Viars that I love drama (or as he says draaama).
      • He replied oh, I believe you.
    • The first year I directed the Passion Play it was difficult.
    • I was figuring out how various other people in leadership served and how I could best come alongside of them to help them in this role.
    • This last year though was a bit different.
      • My mom the day we were setting up in the Long Center had a heart attack.
      • I was encouraged by the other Pastors that I needed to go be with my mom in ICU and to stay there for as long as my family needed me to be there.
      • I was able to return just in time for the first performance (my mom was stabilized and showing signs of recovery).
      • As I stood in front of the cast, choir, orchestra, and crew, I could not help but think, “I love these people.”
      • I love my church and I love serving with my church.

we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

In order to understand this picture a bit better we need to go back to the beginning of the book of Ephesians.  This terminology is something that has been carried throughout the entire book and so let’s look at it as it was introduced to us in the beginning of the book.

Ephesians 1:18–23 (NASB95)

18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might 20 which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. 22 And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, 23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.

We know that when Christ came to the earth He humbled himself and took on the form of a servant.

As He walked upon the earth He came not to be served but rather to serve.

As He hung and suffered and died on the cross for us, He bore the weight of our sins and our shame upon Him.  So that we could be forgiven of our sins.

But when He defeated death and rose from the dead.

Ultimately, Christ died for the church, because He died for all who will believe in Him.

This should impact the motivation for everything the church does.  We should carry out the same mission that Christ carried out.

In essence as a church we are to be a foretaste of the joy that comes from being in the body of Christ.

from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies,

As the body of Christ we are to be unified to do one job … bring glory to God.

We are unified.

Romans 12:4–5 (NASB95)

4 For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function, 5 so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.

We all carry our own unique skills and purposes, but ultimately we are all a part of the same body.  So there is a common goal we are all working form.

This metaphor of the church being the body is really quite powerful.

When was the last time you viewed your participation in the church as being a part of the body of Christ. 

Does that change the importance of you being a part of the church?

The third lesson we can learn is that.

according to the proper working of each individual part,

We all have been uniquely gifted by God to serve Him in unique ways.

Regardless of what it is that you can do there are talents that you have that you are to be using for God’s glory.

In Matthew 25: 14 -30 we are told the following parable.

Matthew 25:14–30 (NASB95)

14 “For it is just like a man about to go on a journey, who called his own slaves and entrusted his possessions to them. 15 “To one he gave five talents, to another, two, and to another, one, each according to his own ability; and he went on his journey. 16 “Immediately the one who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and gained five more talents. 17 “In the same manner the one who had received the two talents gained two more. 18 “But he who received the one talent went away, and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money. 19 “Now after a long time the master of those slaves came and settled accounts with them. 20 “The one who had received the five talents came up and brought five more talents, saying, ‘Master, you entrusted five talents to me. See, I have gained five more talents.’ 21 “His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’ 22 “Also the one who had received the two talents came up and said, ‘Master, you entrusted two talents to me. See, I have gained two more talents.’ 23 “His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’ 24 “And the one also who had received the one talent came up and said, ‘Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow and gathering where you scattered no seed. 25 ‘And I was afraid, and went away and hid your talent in the ground. See, you have what is yours.’ 26 “But his master answered and said to him, ‘You wicked, lazy slave, you knew that I reap where I did not sow and gather where I scattered no seed. 27 ‘Then you ought to have put my money in the bank, and on my arrival I would have received my money back with interest. 28 ‘Therefore take away the talent from him, and give it to the one who has the ten talents.’ 29 “For to everyone who has, more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but from the one who does not have, even what he does have shall be taken away. 30 “Throw out the worthless slave into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

There are some take aways we can get from this passage.

  • No matter how many talents or how few talents you have you must use them.
  • You should be looking to expand your talents.
  • Faithfulness is demonstrated by using your talents.
  • Not using your talents is not a valid option.

So what are your talents?

At this time I am going to ask my friend and fellow servant Drew Burton to come up here and share his testimony with us.

Some of the things I love about Drew and his wife Sylvia are the ways that they look to serve.  They are always identifying ways that there is a need for their abilities and then they meet that need.

If you have identified your talents, are you using them?

The fourth lesson we can learn about serving is

causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

The more we work together as the body of Christ the more we are unified. 

The more we are unified the more we are engaged.

The more we are engaged the more we encourage others to join us.

The more we encourage others to join us, the more the body is strengthened.

Think with me about the Living Nativity!

When my wife and I moved to Lafayette 11 years ago.

Will you use your talents to help strengthen and grow the church?

The fifth and final lesson we learn about serving is

causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

Countless times in the  Bible we are told about the love of Christ impacting the things that He does.

Matthew 14:14 (NASB95)

14 When He went ashore, He saw a large crowd, and felt compassion for them and healed their sick.

Mark 6:34 (NASB95)

34 When Jesus went ashore, He saw a large crowd, and He felt compassion for them because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and He began to teach them many things.

John 3:16 (NASB95)

16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.

Christ as the head of the church has directed the body to be busy serving as a unified body out of love.

Not only does serving become motivated because of the Love of Christ for the world.  And not only should we be seeking to love others in the same type of love that Christ has shown us.

Serving is also motivated by our love for our church family.  By our love for the body of Christ.

The church is being build up in love because through serving we are connected together in a stronger way. 

So how about you? 

Do you long to represent the head of the church, Christ, in the way you function as part of the body of Christ?

Do you seek unity as a member of the body of Christ?

Do you seek to use your talents to serve within the body of Christ?

Do you help strengthen the church by the way that you serve the body of Christ?

Do you serve because of the love demonstrated in Christ?

Do you serve because of the love you have for the rest of the body of Christ?

 


Johnny Kjaer

B.A. - Church Ministries, Maranatha Baptist University
M. DIV. - Faith Bible Seminary
D.Min. - Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (in progress)

Johnny is married to Tori.  They have 3 children Leif, Tryggve, and Kjirsti.  He has been a part of the youth ministry at Faith since his internship began in 2010.  He has been in the position of Pastor of Student Ministries since 2013.  Johnny is an ACBC certified counselor.  He also serves the church by directing the Lafayette Living Nativity and the Lafayette Passion Play.

Read Johnny Kjaer's Journey to Faith for the full account of how the Lord led Pastor Kjaer to Faith Church.