Friday, July 30, 2010

Slavery & Bondservants

Slavery has been on my mind lately. I know. How fun to be me.

A couple of weeks ago, CCV had the very great pleasure of having Pastor Trent Renner preach. His sermon was titled "Bondservant vs. Slacktivist". And it made me think for days, and still does.

Slacktivism is a term that was coined in the the mid-90's and means that one is engaged, only on the surface, in causes. For instance, wearing a ribbon to support breast cancer, but not actually donating any money or pounding the pavement for awareness.

Pastor Renner was suggesting that American Christians tend to have a slacktivist mentality. We go through the motions, going to church, putting our kids in Sunday school, but when we leave service we go back to how we want to live, rather than putting Christ first in our lives.

His point was that either we are slacktivists or we are bondservants to Christ. A bondservant is one who serves out of love, reverence, and in total devotion.

In the Bible, the Hebrew word "doulas" is sometimes translated as slave. And as Americans we don't have a whole lot of fondness for the term slave. Doulas is correctly translated as bondservant. But unfortunately, when we read slave we don't want to have any part of it. And rightly so, I would say.

The American slavery period was not one that people regard with much joy. It was a terrible thing; people purchasing others, denying humane treatment, people regarded as property. This was not good. And thank the Lord the U.S. decided it was so horrible they were willing to fight to end it. However, because slavery in America was horrifying we can't fathom wanting to be in servitude to anyone but ourselves.

I think this has presented a bit of a conundrum with our call to be bondservants to Christ. Those of us who desire to follow Christ as Lord have to give over every part of our lives, and live in accordance with the Spirit. The beauty, of course, is that in living in servitude to Christ, we are free to become the person God has designed us. And it's not a life of emptiness. It's a life of purpose. It's a significant life. There is freedom in serving Christ.

Obviously, I'm not trying to win the approval of people, but of God. If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ's servant. -Galatians 1:10 NLT

1 comment:

D.L. White said...

Good thoughts. The world likes to distort things and say we should be free to do what we want, but the truth of the matter is we are all going to serve somebody - either we will be a slave to sin, or a slave set free by Christ, and now a willing bondservant for His glory. His yoke is easy and His burden is light.