Everywhere I look these days, Pastors like Joel Osteen are preaching more about the me theology over the more Biblically Correct Others’s Theology. Jesus never mentioned the words, “What’s in it for me,” and either should we. So what does the Bible say about serving and focusing on others over ourselves (Spoiler alert…Jesus thought about us to the point that He gave His life for us).
The Bible has a great deal to say about servanthood because the central theme of the Bible is the Servant of all—Jesus Christ. “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45). When we give Jesus Christ His rightful place as Lord of our lives, His lordship will be expressed in the way we serve others (Mark 9:35;1 Peter 4:10;John 15:12-13). How can we demonstrate love for God? Our love for God will be expressed in our love for others. “For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake” (2 Corinthians 4:5).
True leadership is servanthood, and the greatest leader of all time is Jesus Christ. Servanthood is an attitude exemplified by Christ “who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant” (Philippians 2:6-7). The five words in the New Testament translated “ministry” generally refer to servanthood or service given in love. Serving others is the very essence of ministry. All believers are called to ministry (Matthew 28:18-20), and, therefore, we are all called to be servants for the glory of God. Living is giving; all else is selfishness and boredom.
It has been rightly stated, “Rank is given you to enable you to better serve those above and below you. It is not given for you to practice your idiosyncrasies” (General Bruce C. Clarke, USA, Ret). Let’s serve others by serving Christ (Colossians 3:23-24). God the Father has served us by sacrificing Christ on the cross for our sins, and we should serve others by giving the gospel and our lives to them (1 Thessalonians 1:5-6). Those who desire to be great in God’s kingdom must be the servant of all (Matthew 20:26).