Taken from a series in Romans:
Romans 12.9-13 – Marks Of A True Christian – In The Family
After being exhorted to serve their local assembly of believers – something we all need regular reminding of – Paul then starts a section detailing the character and actions of believers (vv.9-21), almost like instructing them how to live as a disciple of Jesus. It’s broken into three parts; relating to those in the family, relating to those outside the family, and relating to those in the church, bigger picture. Today, then, in the family.
9 Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. 10 Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. 11 Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. 12 Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. 13 Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.
In the family, love should be genuine, and we should have the strongest dislike for what is evil. We hold fast to what is good by honouring God in all we do, both in our individual families and in the church family. One way to do this is by holding His Word in the highest regard (hold fast to what is good). His Word is His revealed will to us whilst we are here on His earth, His Word became flesh and dwelt among us, His Word is what changes us, His Word is what saves our souls (James 1.21b).
V.11 is great, isn’t it, simply – don’t be lazy! Get off the sofa and do some stuff! Get involved and serve: serve the Lord by serving His people, serve the Lord by serving His bride, the church, serve the Lord and do not be slothful, don’t be lazy! In the previous few verses Paul talks about gifts and says that we are all uniquely but in a unified manner gifted to serve each other. It takes dozens of people to make a church service happen each week, dozens of different people! Don’t be slothful, get involved and join them! Contribute to the needs to the saints by serving the Lord.
These few short verses could not be clearer:
a believer in Jesus is one who serves.
As James writes, I will show you my faith by my works (2.18b). So, the mark of a true Christian in the family – one who serves the rest.
Point to ponder – How am I serving the family, and if I am not, why not?
Prayer – Father, we thank you again for the diversity in our gifting but the unified way in which they come together for your glory and for your people. Help us to see the opportunities to serve you and your people in your church here at Saar Fellowship, and any other church families we become a part of in the future. Amen.
For more on Romans, try this.