Summary: The more deeply a person surrenders to Christ and becomes dependent on Him daily, the more likely they are to finish the spiritual race in victory. Early Christians described it with the metaphor "bond-slave." It's what we're supposed to be!
BOND SLAVE OF CHRIST
1 Cor. 6:19-20
A. HUMOR: A SURE-FIRE SOLUTION
1. "I could sure do with your help, Steve," Isaac said to his best friend. “All right, so what's your problem?" replied Steve.
2. "Whenever I talk to my wife," replied Isaac, "she never seems to be interested in what I'm saying."
3. "Oh! It's very common for such a thing to happen," said Steve, "but I’ve heard of a sure-fire solution to that problem."
4. "Really! I got to hear this," said Isaac. "What’s this sure-fire solution to getting my wife to listen to me?"
5. "Simple: You talk in your sleep!" replied Steve.
B. THESIS AND TITLE
1. There are those who make it to the end of the Christian race and those that falter and fall away. It’s not a mystery why some make it and some don’t: it’s all about surrender and commitment.
2. The more deeply a person surrenders to Christ and becomes dependent on Him daily, the more likely they are to finish the spiritual race in victory.
3. Today we’re going to look at a term the early Christians used to describe total surrender to the will and purpose of Jesus.
4. The title of this message is “Bond Slave of Christ.”
I. WE ARE TO BE BOND SLAVES, ‘DOULOS’
A. GREATEST IN THE KINGDOM SHOULD BE ‘DOULOS’
42 Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. 43 Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all (Gr. doulos). 45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Mk. 10:42-45. What’s a ‘doulos’?
B. 7 WORDS FOR SERVANT/SLAVE (in descending order):
1. HUPERETES – subordinate, assistant. (Jn.18:36; Mt.25:58)
2. DIAKONOS – attendant, waiter. (Jn. 12:26; Rom. 16:1)
3. MISTHOTOS – wage worker. (Mk. 1:20)
4. OIKETES – menial domestic.
5. THERAPON – a menial attendant.
6. PAIS – a young slave.
7. DOULOS – bond slave. Possibly chained. Completely owned and dominated by the will of the owner. The doulos is at the bottom.
8. Interestingly, Paul (Rom. 1:1), James (1:1), Jude (1:1), and Peter (II:1:1) all said they were bond slaves, “doulos of Jesus Christ.” Even Jesus made Himself a doulos as our example (John 13: 4-5, 12-17), when He washed His disciple’s feet.
C. WE HUMANS ARE BY NATURE DOULOS
1. “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped; but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant (doulos), being made in human likeness” Phip. 2:3-7. Jesus took on OUR nature as a doulos!
2. It’s part of our nature to “serve” someone, that’s why Joshua said, “choose you this day whom you will serve” (24:15). So the question is not WHETHER we will serve a master, but WHO we will serve!
3. Jesus verified this when He said, “No man can serve 2 masters!” Mt. 6:24.
II. UNTIL JESUS FREES US, WE’RE BOUND
A. MANY PEOPLE WOULD DISAGREE THAT THEY’RE BOUND
1. The Jews told Jesus, “We…have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?” Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave (doulos) to sin.” John 8:33-34.
2. Jesus told them they WERE slaves to SIN! We’re chained to it.
B. EXAMPLES OF OUR BONDAGE?
1. Captives of ADDICTIONS. 23.5 million Americans are addicted to alcohol and drugs. And it’s not just the young! An estimated 15 percent of elderly suffer from substance abuse and addiction! [A]
2. Captives of PORNOGRAPHY. 12 to 30 million people have a sexual addiction of some kind. A study done in 2006 of people age 18-49 found that 82% looked at pornographic magazines, 84% viewed pornographic films, and 34% viewed pornography online. [B]
3. Captives of WORKAHOLICS. Studies have found that workaholics display many of the same characteristics as those addicted to drugs or alcohol. 15.7 million people are workaholics! Jesus warned us not to put money/career first. [C]
4. Captives of STRIFE: divorce; estrangement from kids, parents, siblings; trouble on job; domestic violence, etc. Divorce rates since 1960 have risen from 25 to 50% (there’s always strife and trauma with divorce). According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, an estimated 1.3 million American women experience DV each year. [D]