An ancient Hebrew prophet once said “Then shall ye return and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God, and Him that serveth Him not.” Malachi 3:18 This would appear to be God’s basic definition of the righteous and the wicked. Another Hebrew of old was referred to as lacking – this one a king, “and he did evil, for he did not set his heart to seek the Lord.” 2 Chronicles 12:14. If the purpose of life is to find God and be absorbed into eternity in style, then we are missing the boat in this country. We have become a hedonistic nation. (living for pleasure and self interest.) Shame on us – we need a different focus.
So what does it mean to serve or seek God? Of course it means accepting Jesus Christ as one’s Lord and Savior. Believing in (accepting) J.C. puts us on track w/the value system of God. Today with so much atheism & alternate concepts of God, belief in the Christ of the gospels is fundamental to serving God. Jesus Himself put it this way, "This is the work of God, that you believe on him whom (God) hath sent." John 6:29 We should also demonstrate our faith by SERVICE. James, the apostle and brother of Christ said, “so faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.” James 2:17 (And dead faith may not be any better than a dead car. You can get in it, but it won’t go anywhere.) We need to balance our faith with service, if God is watching us and expecting something – which He surely is.
So what kind of service? At least five things. (1) Keep His commandments. “by this we may be sure that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. . .” 1 John 2:3 there are eleven basic ones. The ten of Moses, Exodus 20, and the one Jesus added, “. . . that you love one another.” John 15:12 That LOVE is especially needful today because it appears American people are so prone to EAT each other - see link 29. (2) Study your Bible. “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed . . .” 2 Tim 2:15 “Thy word is very pure; therefore, thy servant loveth it. ” Psalm 119:140 Our love for God is made evident by our love of God's Word. (3) Pray. “The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer . . . ” 1 Peter 3:12 (4) Attend church at least on Sunday. This is the fourth commandment. So which church? Just pick one. If those folks are unfriendly or spiritually dead, go to the next one down the street. (See “Which Church Is Right, Link #49) (5) Then there is charitable giving to His cause. Jesus taught, “Give and it will be given to you, good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over, will be put into your lap. For the measure you give will be the measure you get back.” Luke 6:38, and “each one must do as he has made up his mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion . . .” 2 Corinthians 9:7 The writer, has found that giving to God’s cause is better than investing with a solid bank – it’s on the record and it does come back, according to our faithfulness. (See "Christian Giving", Link #30)
Much more could be said about serving God, but hopefully the high points have been touched. In conclusion: We cannot earn our way into heaven, but once our name is in the Book of Life (Rev 20:11-15), we are expected to "serve". "If any one serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there shall my servant be also; if any one serves me, the Father will honor him." John 12:26 Are you serving & pursuing Christ and fulfilling your purpose of being created? Or are you just hedonistic & self actualized and blowing His blessing on earth and eternity in Heaven? We all decide the way we will go. Choose Jesus, He is alive. See also link 155, "I Don't Eat Pork"
Many other interesting Titles: www.gospelnotes.net - link 1 is Index * * F. J. Stone * *