(Article for publication week of 6-18- AD 2015)
"Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ" (Romans 1:1a).
As we announced last week, we plan to be writing for the next several weeks on the institution of domestic servitude from a Biblical perspective. We call upon our readers to learn to think Biblically. It takes some labour to do this, for the world and the Devil are trying to get us to think as they would have us to think, and our flesh is more than willing to yield to this unholy and anti-God pressure. I urge you dear reader to lay aside every worldly ambition, and every human philosophy, and every devilish idea, and discipline your mind to think as God would have you. We urge you to examine everything you see and hear and read by the inspired Word of God.
Now, note well how the Apostle Paul describes himself. He describes himself as a "servant" of the Lord Jesus Christ. This word "servant" in our text is translated from the Greek word, "doulos." The best authorities tell us that the Greek word, "doulos" literally means a "slave." This is the same Greek word used in Ephesians 6:5 and numerous other times in the New Testament. Some modern translations of the New Testament often translate "doulos" as "slave", rather than as "servant" in the Authorised Version. There is nothing faulty with the Authorised Version's translation of doulos, for in 1611 the English word "servant" carried essentially the same meaning as "slave." Nor is this the only place that Paul describes himself as a doulos, i.e. a slave. He uses the same description of himself in Titus 1:1. Peter, James and Jude use the same word concerning themselves (2 Peter 1:1; James 1:1; Jude 1:1).
The Apostle Paul delightfully declared himself to be a slave of the Lord Jesus Christ. He knew himself to be the purchased property of Christ, and as such he was obligated to do the bidding of his Dear Master in everything. And so it is with everyone who is saved by the Lord Jesus Christ- we are His slaves. Christ does not save sinners and leave them to themselves. He saves them to bring them into His service. Some of you would like to have Jesus to be your saviour and keep you out of hell, but you refuse to be the servant of the Lord Jesus Christ. Thus you show yourself to be unsaved and on the high road to hell.
Now, the fact is that everyone is either a slave of the Lord Jesus Christ, or else they are a slave of the Devil. Dear reader, you are not free- you are either a slave of sin and the world and the Devil (Romans 6:20; John 8:34), or you are a slave of the Lord Jesus Christ. I will submit to you that it is far better to be Christ's servant! Christ loves His slaves, but the Devil hates his. Christ demands nothing of His servants except what is for their good, but the Devil requires that which will destroy both body and soul an hell. The Lord Jesus is a gentle Master, but the Devil is a cruel one. The Lord Jesus Christ died for His slaves to purchase them from eternal ruin, but the Devil leaves his slaves to fend for themselves with nothing but their own self righteousness which will damn them forever. I ask you dear reader, would you not prefer the service of Christ to that of the Devil? Why don't you cry out to Him now for mercy and ask Him to deliver you from your present master and make you His servant?