Summary: A sermon examining the relationship of a slave to his Master.
Slaves Of Christ
There is an old story about Abraham Lincoln. it is said that he went to the slave block to buy back a slave girl. As she looked at the white man bidding on her, she figured he was another white man, going to buy her and then abuse her. He won the bid and as he was walking away with his property, he said, "Young lady, you are free." She said, "What does that mean?" "It means you are free." "Does that mean that I can say whatever I want to say?" Lincoln said, "Yes, my dear, you can say whatever you want to say." "Does that mean that I can be whatever I want to be?" Lincoln said, "Yes, you can be whatever you want to be." "Does that mean I can go wherever I want to go?" He said, "Yes, you can go wherever you want to go."...the girl, with tears streaming down her face, said, "Then I choose to go with you." (Source: http://www.christianitytoday.com/moi/2000/001/january/lincoln-at-slave-block.html)
If I am honest, I have been unable to verify whether or not that really happened. But if true, it paints a beautiful picture of voluntary servitude. It illustrates how each and every Christian should respond to our Master. As Christians we have been "bought with a price". (I Corinthians 6:20) - Jesus sought us and bought us. We were not purchased with silver or Gold. We were redeemed by "the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot"- (I Peter 1:19)
Redemption is the act of purchasing back something that had been lost, by the payment of a ransom.
Jesus came to set us free... but He did not come to set us free to live however we want to live and to do what we want to do. Jesus redeemed us so that we could be free from sin, the Law, Satan, death and Hell
But we are to be slaves unto Him. - People love the idea of Jesus as "Savior". We are quick to proclaim that He called us His "friends". We refer to Him as "The Good Shepherd". We profess that He is "The Christ". We call Him "Emmanuel" (God with us). We believe that He is the Son of God. Without a doubt He is all of these things and many more. But ultimately He is Lord!
Many people today refer to Him as Lord but unfortunately this has become nothing more than empty Christian rhetoric. Very few people grasp the concept of Jesus as Lord of their lives. This is a two sided relationship. If there is a Master or Lord, then there must be a slave. There is no doubt that Jesus is Lord. The question is... are you His slave? Is He YOUR LORD AND MASTER? That is a question that I hope you can answer before you leave here today.
I would like to look to the Word of God and preach on the subject "Slaves Of Christ". In order to illustrate the proper relationship between the slave and his master, I would like to look at a beautiful portion of scripture found in Exodus chapter 21. Here we are given the regulations concerning Hebrew slaves and their masters.
The scriptures tells us that if a (Hebrew) master purchased a Hebrew slave he would only be required to serve for 6 years. In the 7th year, known as the "Year of Jubilee" that slave would be set free. When the 7th year came the slave had the opportunity to remain with his master. If he said "I love my master" he was permitted to remain as a slave. When this happened there was a legal ceremony that took place. The slave would be taken before judges and public witnesses and an "aul" would be driven through his ear. This signified that he belonged to his master forever.
When we think of slavery or hear the word slave our minds are immediately taken back to the horrible events of our nations past. But the images in our minds are very different from the context of these verses. In certain instances Hebrews would voluntarily become slaves. This was usually motivated by extreme poverty. This process is further explained in - Leviticus 25:39 “If your brother becomes poor beside you and sells himself to you, you shall not make him serve as a slave: 40 he shall be with you as a hired servant and as a sojourner. He shall serve with you until the year of the jubilee. 41 Then he shall go out from you, he and his children with him, and go back to his own clan and return to the possession of his fathers. 42 For they are my servants, whom I brought out of the land of Egypt...