December 27

The Pattern for Servanthood
Matthew 20:25-28

In the world's thinking, great men are the ones with authority, prominence, and power. Though Jesus Christ had all that, He gave it up to become a servant (Isa. 42:1).

Jesus gave Himself completely to fulfill the Father's plan of redemption, even though the beneficiaries—namely, each of us—were undeserving. God is holy and righteous, and He cannot be in the presence of sin. Therefore, He must separate Himself from those who are stained by wrongdoing. That includes all of humanity (Rom. 3:23).

Everybody is born captive to the desires of the flesh (Rom. 6:16-18). When someone claims to be living on his "own terms," he is actually serving whatever his human nature craves. The penalty for that false sense of liberty is death (Rom. 6:23).

Jesus' ultimate act of service was to give His life as a ransom for many (Matt. 20:28). The word describes the price paid to set a slave free—Christ voluntarily purchased our liberation. There was only one way our holy God could remove our guilt yet remain true to His own law: Someone sinless had to pay our sin debt for us.

Jesus' sacrifice spared us the penalty we deserve. Instead, we receive the gift of grace and have been declared no longer guilty. Moreover, we are elevated from slaves to sons and daughters of the Almighty!

Jesus served the Father's purpose faithfully. He gave up His righteousness to carry the weight of all our wickedness—and endured a crushing separation from His Father. To meet our needs, the Savior held nothing of Himself back, and thereby set a powerful example of servanthood for us follow.

For more biblical teaching and resources from Dr. Charles Stanley, please visit www.intouch.org.

Used with permission from In Touch Ministries, Inc. © 2009 All Rights Reserved.