Summary: We must love and serve others as if we are loving and serving Christ.
Ministering to Jesus
May 3, 2009 Evening Service
Immanuel Baptist Church, Wagoner, OK
Message Point: We must love and serve others as if we are loving and serving Christ.
Focus Passage: Matthew 25:31-46
Supplemental Passage: Let love of the brethren continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it. Remember the prisoners, as though in prison with them, and those who are ill-treated, since you yourselves also are in the body. (Hebrews 13:1-3)
Introduction: One day while walking with some children, Queen Mary was caught in a sudden shower. Quickly taking shelter on the porch of a home, she knocked at the door and asked to borrow an umbrella. “I’ll send it back tomorrow,” she said. The queen had deliberately disguised her appearance by putting on a hat that partly covered her face and by wearing some very plain clothes. The homeowner, reluctant to give a stranger her best umbrella, offered her a castoff she found in the attic. One rib was broken and there were several holes in it. Apologizing, she turned it over to the monarch, whom she did not recognize. The next day she had another visitor—in man with gold braid on his uniform and an envelope in his hand. “The queen sent me with this letter,” he said, “and also asked me to thank you personally for the loan of your umbrella.” Stunned, the woman burst into tears. “Oh, what an opportunity I missed that did not give my very best,” she cried.
I. God Calls Us to Loving Service
a. God’s love is active; ours should be active too.
b. You should be able to see your love for people.
II. God Calls Us to Simple Service
a. feeding the hungry; giving drink to the thirsty; showing hospitality to strangers; clothing of the naked; caring for the sick; and visiting the imprisoned.
b. his parable describes acts of mercy we all can do every day. These acts do not depend on wealth, ability, or intelligence; they are simple acts freely given and freely received
III. God Will Judge Us Based on Our Loving Service
a. Jesus used the images of sheep and goats to describe two different groups of people based on how well they served those who were in need around them. He said that the sheep were those who saw the needy around them and responded to their needs in acts of loving service. The goats, on the other hand, were those who also saw the needs around them, but failed to act to alleviate the suffering they witnessed.
b. The story is told of a young boy in the ghetto being teased by someone who said, “If God loves you, why doesn’t He take care of you? Why doesn’t God tell someone to bring you shoes and a warm coat and better food?” The young boy thought for a moment, and then with tears starting in his eyes, said, “I guess He does tell somebody, but somebody forgets.”
IV. God Will Bless Our Loving Service
a. We think that our contribution is insignificant; but certainly not to the person that is being helped.