Who are we and why are we here? Ephesians 2:10 answers this foundational question in a simple way. It says, “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (NIV).
In the previous study, “People of the Book,” we discussed what we believe, who we are and what we do as Southern Baptists. Now, we will look at how God has called us as His servants to serve Him for His kingdom.
Unlike any other calling, serving the Lord has unique requirements, which we will study by consulting a plethora of scriptural verses in the Servants of God guide.
Why was this book written?
Through consultations with many churches, I have pinpointed common issues in churches today. One of the most significant issues is the lack of serving and leading within the church.
There are many who attend church as consumers by attending on Sundays or listening to positive sermons, but they never commit to obey and serve the Lord and His kingdom. These consumers simply enjoy adding another membership to their busy schedules, viewing the church as a means to fill up their emotional tanks or as something to be entertained by on the weekends.
Consumers do not have a healthy understanding of church or who they are in Christ. After praying through the genuineness of your faith, it is important to understand that true believers cannot remain as consumers — they must follow God by serving His kingdom.
As Jesus Himself came to serve and not to be served (Mark 10:45), His followers are called to serve as well. This guide is written to help readers understand who they are, who they serve and what it means to serve.
Serving the Lord is the highest calling and purpose in each of our lives.
Who would benefit from this study?
This guide is for anyone who wants to serve the Lord in any capacity. It can be used by churches to raise up leaders to serve Christ’s church and His kingdom. It’s not only for pastors but for lay leaders and those who believe in Jesus Christ.
As Southern Baptists and people of the Bible, we believe in the priesthood of all believers. The Southern Baptist Convention’s position statement says, “Laypersons have the same right as ordained ministers to communicate with God, interpret Scripture, and minister in Christ’s name. . . . This doctrine is first and foremost a matter of responsibility and servanthood, not privilege and license.”
Serving the Lord is not limited to serving at a corporate worship service or Sunday School, but it is for people in day jobs, parenthood, school and everywhere in between. Truly, this guide is for anyone who is born again and wants to serve the Lord.
What is this book about?
The Servants of God guide is divided into three major subjects: what God’s servants are called for, what God’s servants prepare for and what God’s servants do.
God has called His servants to know their purpose in Christ and their relationship with God. God’s servants must prepare their hearts and attitudes to reflect a lifestyle that is honoring to God and serves Him. Lastly, God’s servants should explore what disciplines they should practice regularly, what ministries they should conduct and what they need to do to continue a fruitful relationship with God.
Serving the Lord is the highest calling and purpose in each of our lives. Through this seven-week study, I pray that you will understand what it means to serve the Lord and His kingdom, and I pray that you will apply what you learn in order to grow spiritually and benefit your local church.
Ultimately, my prayer is for you to grow in your relationship with God and serve your local church, thereby expanding God’s kingdom and bringing the power of the gospel to all nations.
by Sammy Joo / Senior Consultant / Baptist State Convention of North Carolina
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