Wednesday, July 3, 2013
As the coming of the Lord draws nearer, there seems to be a continuous need for faithful men and women. The Lord continues to look for faithful men (permit me to use ‘men’ in the generic) to whom He could entrust His eternal purposes. He’s looking for men who are consistent not only because of, but also in spite of whatever happens. However, it appears that the level of faithfulness and commitment to the high calling in Christ keeps deteriorating by the day. We seem to be more committed to our desires than to the Lord’s desire. Our prayers are focused on what we want. Our time is spent in carrying out our activities while God takes the leftovers. Of course, we can always come up with several excuses why we do so. But I think these all have to do with our value system. It has to do with what we have defined to be more valuable and deserving of our pursuit in life. Many have been overcome by the need to respond to the pressures or pleasures of this world. I think from time to time we need to revisit 2Timothy 3:1-5. It’s so instructive, especially in these times. The need for faithful men keeps increasing all over the world because the rate of unfaithfulness among men keeps increasing also. It is so interesting to know that not only the Lord Jesus Christ is searching for faithful men; men are also on the lookout for faithful men everywhere. I am yet to see a company that is searching for unfaithful men to employ. No one dares that. Why? Because unfaithful men can’t keep things. They can’t hold things together. Things just fall off their hands. They are slack, inconsistent and undependable. There seems to be shortage in the availability of faithful men. Hysterically, even unfaithful men are searching for faithful men. Sounds funny, doesn’t it? In His message to the angel of the Church in Smyrna, the Lord Jesus had this to say: “...be thou faithful unto death,” (Rev. 2:10). I believe the Master is saying these same words to the Church today. The Lord is serious about faithfulness. One phrase the Lord Jesus never gets tired of telling you and me today is: “Be Faithful.” Why? Because there can be no completion of any work without faithfulness. Faithfulness is the reason a house is built and completed. The labourer puts one block upon the other and before you know it, it’s a house! It’s the same with the Christian. As we remain faithful to Jesus and the Heavenly Vision, we are being built up one step at a time. The moment we stop being faithful it’s like removing the previously laid blocks to start afresh. Hence, the need for faithfulness – consistency. When we are unfaithful we harm ourselves. With time God replaces unfaithful men. His work must prosper! Faithfulness means consistency in doing a particular thing. In another sense, faithfulness also means to be full of faith! Faithfulness doesn’t just happen to us. Remember, it’s one of the content of the fruit of the spirit. Every Born Again Believer has faithfulness in his or her spirit. But just like every other fruit it must be cultivated. It’s just like the fruit of love. Romans 5:5 tells us that the love of God has been shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit but still not every believer is walking in love today. Just as walking in love is a decision, being faithful is also a decision. The Master asks us to be faithful because we can be. Praise God! A faithful man must have first made a decision and then the action follows. “A faithful man shall abound [stay] with blessings” (Prov.28:20). Blessings would not destroy a faithful man. He would know how to manage the blessed life. Sometimes success destroys people more than failure does because so many people don’t know how to manage success. It takes more to manage success than it takes to manage failure. Every Christian is both a son and a servant of God. I’ve heard a number of preachers say that we are not servants but sons of God. I even believed that and functioned with it for a while. But when you carefully study the Scriptures you’d discover that we are both. In relationship we are sons but in service we are servants. That is not a demotion but a promotion. It’s a privilege to be a servant of the Most High God. The worth of every servant is determined by who his master is. A servant is simply one who serves. Let’s keep it simple. The word ‘minister’ means servant. To administer means to serve. We must be very careful not to read things into Scriptures. We must let the Scriptures define things for us! The purpose of Christian maturity is to take up Kingdom responsibilities and to be faithful, dependable, excellent and effective at it! You don’t treat the Lord’s work with slackness. God’s work deserves the best – better than we give to our businesses. Our God is excellent and He deserves our best! Faithfulness is a requirement in serving the Lord! The Lord Jesus Christ is the ultimate standard and definition of everything good and perfect. We see the height of faithfulness in Him: “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.” (Hebrews 13:8). Praise God He’s still the same Jesus! Today you’re still saved (if you are born again) because Jesus Christ is still the same today! Being the same doesn’t mean not making improvements. Jesus is perfect and doesn’t need improvement but we need improvements. However, being the same means consistency and advancement in doing the right thing. The Lord only commits things into the hands of faithful men. In serving the Lord, faithfulness is a requirement (1Cor. 4:2). Apostle Paul said to Timothy: “And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.” (2Tim.2:2). When you read the words of Jesus in Matthew 25:14-30 you’d see that it’s more about faithfulness than it is about the volume of work done. God always rewards faithfulness. So how do we stay faithful before the Lord? Apostle Paul by the Holy Spirit tells us. We see that in his instruction to Timothy: “That good thing which was committed unto thee keep by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us.” (2 Tim 1:14). Commit yourself and your service to the Kingdom totally to the Holy Spirit and yield to Him always. You must recognize the place of the Holy Spirit in your life daily if you must live faithfully before the Lord. The Word of God tells us “...Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.” (Zech.4:6). That’s it. So, BE FAITHFUL!