Summary: We are saved to serve - both Christ and others




INTRODUCTION: A. Dr. Albert Schweitzer had returned to Europe on furlough form his missionary service

in Africa when he was 80-years-old. One of the reporters who came to interview the

humble doctor just could not understand why such a famous person would leave the

comfort and security of Europe to live on the mission field in Africa. He asked Dr.

Schweitzer for an explanation. Schweitzer replied: “You see, I had to do something

for Christ.”

B. It’s been said: “We are saved to serve, not to be served.”

1. Jesus Himself set us an example as a servant

a. Mk. 10:45 – “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.”

b. Lk. 22:27b – “I am among you as one who serves.”

2. In our text this evening, Paul asks us to consider (to think about; ponder; reflect on)

our service

C. 1 Cor. 4:1-5 – “So then, men ought to regard us as servants of Christ and as those

entrusted with the secret things of God. Now it is required that those who have been

given a trust must prove faithful. I care very little if I am judged by you or by any

human court; indeed, I do not even judge myself. My conscience is clear, but that

does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me. Therefore judge nothing

before the appointed time; wait till the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is

hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of men’s hearts. At that time each will

receive his praise from God.”


A. Paul says that people should see us “as servants of Christ and those entrusted with the secret things of


1. It should be evident to all who we serve – Jesus Christ

a. Not self, not others, not our families, not our bosses or our customers, not our country

--but Christ

b. All other service should then flow out of our service to Christ

2. Lk. 26:13 –“No servant can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will

be devoted to the one and despise the other.”

--Mark Twain and a Mormon were arguing about polygamy 9having more than one wife). The Mormon

said, “Give me just one verse in the Bible that forbids polygamy!” Twain quickly answered, “That’s

easy. ‘No man can serve two masters.’”

3. The term “regard” is actually an accounting term in the original language

--it means to give an account; take inventory;

B. Paul says that as servants of Christ we are “entrusted with the secret things of God.”

1. “secret” – the word in the original language is where we get our word “mystery”

2. In the biblical sense, it means things that were hidden at one time and have now been revealed

a. We understand God more thoroughly through Jesus

--Jesus said, “If you have see me, you have seen the Father…”

b. What was once hidden has now been revealed

3. Paul is saying that because of our service to Christ, others will see Christ in us and will thus see what

God is like

a. When Wycliffe Bible translator Doug Meland and his wife moved into a village of Brazil’s

Fulnio Indians, the Indians referred to him simply as “the white man”. That reference was not

complimentary since other “white men” had exploited them, burned their homes, and robbed them

of their lands.

But after the Melands learned the Fulnio language and began to help the people with medicine

and in other ways, they began calling Doug “the respectable white man.” When the Melands began

adapting to some of the customs of the people that did not compromise their faith, the Fulnio gave

them greater acceptance and spoke of Doug as “the white Indian.”

Then one day, as Doug was washing the dirty, blood-caked foot of an injured Fulnio boy, he

overheard one of the Indians watching what was happening say, “Whoever heard of a white man

washing an Indian’s foot before? Certainly this man is from God” From that day one, whenever

Doug would go into an Indian home, it would be announce, “Here come the man God sent us.”

b. Jesus said that we were to let the world see our good works so that they might glorify our Father in


c. He also said, “If you’ve done it to the least of these, you’ve done it to me.”


A. We must serve faithfully

1. vs. 2 – “It is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful”

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