Sunday, September 1, 2019, Evident Grace looked at Matthew 25. But first, we looked at Psalm 69.30-31:

 

Psalm 69.30 I will praise the name of God with a song; I will magnify him with thanksgiving. 31 This will please the Lord more than an ox or a bull with horns and hoofs.

 

We found great hope in that this verse demonstrates God’s great job in our praising Him. From there, our service and sacrifice flow from our praise. This informs our understanding of Matthew 25:

 

Matthew 25:31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. 34 Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ 37 Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? 38 And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? 39 And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ 40 And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’

 

41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ 44 Then they also will answer, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?’ 45 Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ 46 And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

 

From those verses, we pursued this Big Idea and these three points:

 

Big Idea: Lies We Believe About Service

 

Service has no Accountability

Service is Optional

Service is Impersonal

 

Service has no Accountability

 

Matthew 25:31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.

 

 

Jesus speaks of His return, and this view of who Jesus is is very different than the popular view. Jesus will return as a reigning king with all the angels of heaven and will sit on His throne. Then, He will divide all the world into His sheep and the goats. This is Jesus reminding all of us that there is an accountability coming to those who serve Him and those who don’t.

 

Service is Optional

 

33 And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. 34 Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ 37 Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? 38 And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? 39 And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ 40 And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’

 

Jesus explains that those who served Him when He was sick, hungry, thirsty, and in jail are ushered into the kingdom that God prepared for them before the foundation of the world. When they hear that, the sheep are confused. They don’t remember serving Jesus or even seeing Him in that condition. Jesus tells them that whenever they served “the least of these”, they were actually serving Jesus.

 

This teaches us that service isn’t optional because those we avoid or even those we flat out don’t serve are actually Jesus. There isn’t an option of not serving Jesus.

 

Service is Impersonal

 

41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ 44 Then they also will answer, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?’ 45 Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ 46 And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

 

The goats, non-believers, are shocked. They don’t remember not serving Jesus. Jesus repeats that serving the least of these is serving Jesus. Again, serving is personal. Always.

 

Big Idea: Lies We Believe About Service

 

Service has no Accountability

Service is Optional

Service is Impersonal

 

Truth: The beauty of Christian service is it is a daily opportunity to serve Jesus Himself.

 

Application: Live knowing that when you see service as loving Jesus, then each and every person and circumstance is an opportunity for you to worship, honor, and become more like Christ.

 

Action: Pray that God will create intimacy between Jesus and your acts of service.

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