Monday, November 13, 2017

Out of Loyalty

Out of Loyalty
November 13, 2017
Joshua 24:15 "But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve. . ."

Jesus told a parable about two sons. The father asked the two to go and work in the field. One agreed while the other denied him. Yet the one who denied it all changed his mind and did the work anyway. The one who agreed at the onset, shirked the responsibility and walked away. Jesus said the one who first said no, but ended up doing the work, he was the one who did the will of the father. This parable was referencing Christianity, specifically about the work involved with living it out, living and following Christ. The one who originally denied the father, realized he was in the wrong and went ahead and got to work in his Christianity. The one who agreed to start things out, yet walked away, watched as the other son got the reward. 

The son who agreed but failed to follow through, that son did not make it into the kingdom. Jesus said that son watched as prostitutes and tax collectors went ahead into Heaven. Either that son had no integrity or was tempted away, but for some reason decided he did not want to do his father's work. The Bible is very clear this guy knew specifically the father and knew the work asked of him. It wasn't like he never met his dad. He had a relationship with the father, lived in his household as a beloved son, yet quit when it was time to live for him. This son was completely out of loyalty, self absorbed, and served himself in the end. The other son, however, started out with selfish motives in play, then came to his senses, got his act together, and followed the will of the father. This man, the one who figured out how to lay down the satisfaction of the flesh, figured out honor and duty, this man ended up fulfilling the will of the father. This man did it all out of loyalty to the one who gave him life, to the one who kept him warm and well fed, to the one who gave him a family and a future. This man entered the kingdom, not because he was perfect, but because he understood what the father did for him, the depth of being called a son, and responded accordingly.

There are many days I'm like both of these sons. You are, too. Some days I am completely fresh out of loyalty and I end up serving myself. Some days, most days, I realize the error of my ways and move forward working for Him, not because it is always fun and exciting, but because I've figured out the loyalty required to overcome my self serving desires and I do what is right in serving my Father. For most Christians this is the case. We tell the Lord we'd like to serve ourselves this day, but then quickly remember all the Lord has done for us, realizing we are compelled to do the will of our dad. This isn't because we feel guilty about it, but we do it out of loyalty to our heavenly Father. There is work to be done and the Lord has asked a good deal from you. Are you fresh out of loyalty to Him or can you do the work out of your loyalty to Him? Which son do you side with, resembling the most? Be careful in your decision, only one makes it into the kingdom of heaven.

Don't take my word for it; look it up:  Matt 21:28-32

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