But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. He that SAITH HE ABIDETH IN HIM ought himself also so to WALK, even AS HE WALKED…. (1John 2:5-6).

     Abideth: meno {men'-o} – live, to remain as one, abide, sojourn, to continue to be present with, to last, to endure.

     In the time of Jesus Christ, the law and religious mindsets which prevailed were spearheaded by the Pharisees, Saduccees, and Scribes. They adhered closely to the traditions of their fathers and kept the sacrifices as instructed by Moses, but they were an UNTOUCHABLE priesthood which lacked mercy and compassion. Jesus came to show a new and living way and I am sure that His words must have sounded as scathing rebukes to these religious leaders who only knew to give what had been passed to them. But the Lord's heart was to AWAKEN and show them that the word of God could not be effective through their traditions (Mark 7:13). He wanted them to understand  that God's heart was for relationship, fellowship and life.  That even their best intentions and the fact that they did many things 'right', could never be effective if they ignored the weightier matters of the law.

     "……ye SHUT UP the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in" (Matt. 23:13.

      "……ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the WEIGHTIER matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these OUGHT ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone" (Matt. 23:23).

     It in the closing of the bowels of mercy and compassion that they kept both themselve and others from experiencing the kingdom of heaven.  The Church of today is much different than she was in the infancy of her humble beginnings. Once again the traditions of fathers and the doctrines of men have entered in and clouded the minds of the people of God and made the word of God of none effect.  Today, there is a fresh hunger in the hearts of God's people for something real, a cry to see truth in demonstration even though many are not sure of what that even is. 

     True fellowship and relationship have been reduced to secularism, status, denomination, and clicks. Success has become based in the world system spawning an atmosphere of competition, i.e. who's right, who has the most, who has the biggest following, and who has the finest building.  Now, there is nothing wrong with us having buildings or position as long as THEY DO NOT HAVE US.  The quest for 'excellence' in relationship to position and superiority has become the focus and deceived the hearts of so many.  Money and numbers have replaced the sanctity of mercy and love. Perception and understanding have become dimmed, vision and destiny clouded, covenant realities almost completely derailed, and I dare say character has taken on "a form of godliness which denies the power thereof" (2 Tim. 3:5).

     Most have not been exposed to a demonstration of God's love and mercy beyond their own personal salvation. Since the times of Jesus and the early Church, there has not been much of a visual demonstration of servitude and true sonship to develop one's understanding of relationship with both the body of Christ and the world and how we are to relate and function in relationship to these..  Humanity is still crying out "Sir, we would SEE JESUS" (John 12:21). 

     To be born again is one thing, but living out the Christian life is quite another entirely.  The new birth is but the beginning, the mere entrance to a new and living way of life.  As with any journey, some want to fly, others want to drive, but are there any who are willing to walk to their destination?   Praise God, that our Lord who is our supreme example, was willing to walk out His destiny.  Oh my goodness, what would have happened if He hadn't done so?  And may I ask at this juncture, what happens when we fail to walk out OURS?!  In this fast paced 'have it your way' world, we seldom witness one who is willing to allot the time and sacrifice necessary to learn and grow.

     In order to get back to the very basic fundamentals of walking out our life in Christ, we must return to His living example for leadership, guidance, and direction.  We must return and behold our first love, Jesus.

     Now, before we go further, let me say unequivocally that this is NOT a WORKS message.  If you see it as such, then you have missed the point!  The walk of the Master had nothing to do with works, but everything to do with submission and obedience to the leadership of the Spirit.  So, how did He walk?  If one was to ask the body of Christ 'what was the walk of Jesus?', immediately His walk is relegated to signs and wonders.  What is foremost in the minds of most believers is the raising of the dead, the blind being made to see, the sick healed, the ability to hear given to the deaf, and many other miracles.  And when asked of most Christians if they want to walk as He did, most will respond with a resounding "of course I do! I want to walk as He walked"!  Not understanding that all the signs and all the wonders were simply evidence of who He was and HOW He walked. 

     The hearts desire of most people in the kingdom of God is to open the blind eyes, heal the sick and raise the dead!   But, how many would be willing to walk through the suffering and rejection that He suffered? Few remember that as He walked, He encountered rejection, and unbelief.  He slept in the mountains and on the ground and His pulpits were the seashore and the mountain side in the blistering heat, the rain and the cold. He was called a devil and relegated to being a lunatic. He was rejected by the religious hierarchy and those whom He created and loved.  He was judged and misunderstood.  It was always in the midst of the poor, the sick, the uneducated, the unclean, and other social misfits that followed and learned of Him.  He generally not accepted by the 'status-quo'.

     Jesus was fully surrendered in His will and all of His ways to His Father. He did not have man's approval, but received the only seal He would ever need when His Father said, "This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased" (Matt. 3:17 & 17:5)!  His walk and life were a continual demonstration of the life and nature that was within Him.  His walk was not by demand nor legalism, but rather a walk of selflessness, compassion, mercy, and love.  It was through Jesus that mankind got a glimpse of the true nature of God the Father which had become lost from the understanding of man in the fall!  He was a walking revelation of WHO GOD WAS AND THE PERSONIFICATION OF HIS LOVING CHARACTER:

      1. by word and demonstration through signs and wonders, thereby meeting the people at the point of their need

      2. by providing reconciliation

      3. through restoration of communication and fellowship

     His walk was total manifested grace in living form, completely contrary to religious ideology and every success formula known to man. His success was predicated on loving His Father and His creation more than Himself, releasing eternal life through the laying down of His own.  The Master and Creator of the Universe declared:

     "For even the Son of man came not to be ministered (served) unto, but to minister (serve), and to give His life a ransom for many" (Mk. 10:45). 

     "But so shall it not be among you: but whosoever will be GREAT among you, shall be your MINISTER (SERVANT); and whosoever of you will be the CHIEFEST, shall be SERVANT of all. For even the Son of man came not to be MINISTERED (SERVED) unto, but to MINISTER (SERVE), and to give His life a ransom" (Mk. 10:42-45).

     Minister: diakoneo {dee-ak-on-eh'-o}:

      1. to be a servant, attendant, domestic, to serve, wait upon

      2. to minister to one, render ministering offices to

      3. to wait at a table and offer food and drink to the guests,

     supply food and necessities of life

      4. to provide care of, distribute the things necessary to sustain life

      5. to take care of the poor and the sick

      6. to attend to anything that may serve another's interests

     "made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a SERVANT..." (Phil. 2:7).  

     Servant:  doulos {doo'-los}

1.  a slave, bondman, man of servile condition

2.  metaph., one who gives himself up to another's will those whose service is used by Christ in extending and advancing his cause among men

3.  devoted to another to the disregard of one's own interests

4.  a servant, attendant

     "being found in fashion as a man, he HUMBLED himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath HIGHLY EXALTED him, and given him a name which is ABOVE every name: That at the name of Jesus EVERY knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that EVERY tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father" (Phil. 2:8-11). Through the life that He lived in the form of flesh, He set the standard by which all that were His would be called to as priests of the Most High God with the understanding that our inner attitude must be as a servant, surrendered to the uttermost seeking only to fulfill HIS WILL. Most want to rule and reign, but so few truly perceive that in order to rule, one must FIRST AND ALWAYS have the heart of a servant. You cannot rule unless you can serve!

     "And because ye are SONS, God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.  Wherefore, THOU ART NO MORE A SERVANT, but a SON; and if a SON, then an heir of God through Christ" (Gal. 4:6-7).  Jesus Christ brought us into 'sonship' and established the heavenly pattern of true sonship.  Many refer to the aforementioned verse stating that they are now no longer servants, that they have been redeemed from that and God has made them to be 'sons'!  Yes, even "kings and priests of the Most High God" (Rev. 1:6)!  Few there be that realize that kings rule and priests SERVE, but even in ruling a true king will rule over his domain and within the parameters of his authority, he in turn serves his people. 

     In the Old Testament, the children of God were called servants as stated in Heb. 3:5: "And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after;" Notice that they were not called sons.  But let us not get puffed up in our 'sonship" for it is unto GOD I am a son; but unto MEN I am a servant, serving on behalf of God.  The only way by which I may minister Christ unto men is as a SERVANT. "Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto (served), but to minister (serve), and to give His life a ransom" (Mat. 20:28).   It is the SON who SERVES! The Son is a servant-Son.

     "Behold My SERVANT, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom My soul delighteth; I have put My Spirit upon Him: He shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles" (Isa. 42:1).  The soul of God delights in His servant and all who serve.  Do you want to be empowered by the Spirit of God?  This is only a privilege for His servants.  Many have the Holy Spirit, but few there be that are empowered by Him because of their lack of love and service to God's creation. 

     Jesus never allowed His Sonship to usurp the role of servant to His beloved creation!  But servitude must be out of the abundance of our heart.  It is not acceptable when it comes through a works mentality to gain acceptance and honor of our Father. It must truly be a forsaking of ones self for another.

     "Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others BETTER than themselves.  Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the THINGS OF OTHERS.  Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of NO REPUTATION, and took upon him the FORM OF A SERVANT, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he HUMBLED himself, and became OBEDIENT unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath HIGHLY EXALTED him, and given him a name which is ABOVE every name:" (Philippians 2:3-9).

     Jesus didn't do anything because He had to!  No, no, He willingly laid Himself down for you and me because it was in His heart to do so.  Let those who have ears hear what the Spirit is saying. Jesus loved His Father and you more than He did Himself!

     I Jn. 3:1, "Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called THE SONS OF GOD."  Paul also understood this truth, for it was the very same Paul who wrote in Gal. 4:7, "Wherefore, thou art no more a servant, but a SON," who also said in Rom. 1:1, "Paul, a SERVANT of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle."  

     With the exception of the cross, I find John 13:3-9 to be one of the most incredible and illustrious demonstrations of selflessness and servitude.  Following the last supper, the SON OF GOD stripped himself of his garments and girded himself with a towel.  Then, kneeling down before his disciples he takes a basin of water and begins to wash their feet, then he begins to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded (in other words, he was naked!)..  As was the custom of the day, it was the servant of the house that performed this duty for the guests thereby honoring them and bringing them tribute in the house of their master. BUT WE SEE JESUS, as the SERVANT of HIS FATHER'S HOUSE, though He was a SON, extending this honor to mere men.  What an amazing scene this must have been.  Peter was absolutely horrified and probably embarrassed to say the least, and he was determined not to let Jesus to wash his feet.  But Jesus said to him "What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter" and went on to tell him, "If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me".  (Jn. 13:7-8).  Little did he realize that he was being called and anointed for the roll of a SON which would result in SERVITUDE.

     "If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet, YE ALSO ought to wash one another's feet" (Jn. 13:14).  Servitude was not a way of life experienced by the ministry in the times of Jesus.  In fact, they were offended and rebuffed by His humility and willingness to intermingle with the people.  And I dare say, it is not much different today, for it is RELIGION THAT DESIRES SONSHIP AND HONOR, BUT RELATIONSHIP DESIRES SERVANTHOOD (I am among you as He that serveth (Luke 22:27).  So many want to be served and to be recognized and in so doing, they end up doing what they are not called to do.  They lust after and desire those places which they perceive are to be honored and adored rather than seeking the heart of Him who paid so great a price.

     In taking the form of a servant, Jesus proclaims the Father's heart concerning the divine order of the Kingdom of God.  God's order is not the order of the world nor after the ways of man.  The higher our consciousness of Christ, the High Priest of the heavens, the deeper our servitude to those around us.

     Jesus, the High Priest of our confession, set forth and walked out the highest law of the Kingdom which would later be demonstrated to it's fullest at Calvary.  Love was taken to its highest height and deepest depth as He laid down His life for all of mankind for "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends" (John 15:13).

     And so now, let us get back to what was said in the opening.  In John 12:21 "The same came therefore to Philip, which was of Bethsaida of Galilee, and desired him, saying, Sir, we would see Jesus".  This scripture depicts to us the cry of all mankind and it is in the chapter that precedes the last supper and the foot washing (John 13)!  Notice they said they wanted to SEE Jesus, showing us that they did not see HIM in the disciples, and so I ask "Can mankind see Him in us?" or will they come to us saying "We would see Jesus"…………