16 Then those who feared the Lord spoke with one another. The Lord paid attention and heard them, and a book of remembrance was written before him of those who feared the Lord and esteemed his name. 17 “They shall be mine, says the Lord of hosts, in the day when I make up my treasured possession, and I will spare them as a man spares his son who serves him. 18 Then once more you shall see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve him. (Malachi 3:16-18)
Jesus does make a distinction among those who serve Him. God look after His servants. Jesus will watch after His disciples. There are obvious and noted differences between those who serve God and those who do not.
As the days draw nearer to the return of Jesus, the devil will create hell lot more nonsense and people who do not fear God will play the fool along with the devil. The devil do have an ultimate end objective, to make people boycott serving Jesus.
The fear of the Lord is a fundamental character of true disciples of Jesus. The lack of it is an opportunity the devil will use to create rebellion among servants of God. The devil’s happy days are when people went on strike, do nothing to serve Jesus.
Indeed we are living in a time when Christian communities at large are caught in a world wide web of humanism doctrine which marginalized the priority to serve Jesus. But the man and woman who feared God will have to choose the will of God above self-will, lest we fall into the danger of exalting human ideology over and above God’s will and commandments.
To serve God is to make ourselves subject unto God, to recognize God Almighty is our master. To serve Jesus is to make ourselves accountable to Jesus, an eternal mark of Christianity the way Jesus wanted. We are disciples of Jesus, servants of God.
In our current society, we are living in a time of independence and freedom of choices, but lest we forget as according to the will and commandments of God there are limits to our act of free will. To go beyond the boundaries God set for mankind, to overwrite the teachings and commandments of Jesus, men and women are heading towards judgements and condemnations. God Himself set the boundaries and Jesus declared He came to fulfill the will and commandments of God.
How God set people apart – those who fear Him.
How Jesus set people apart – those who take delight in His name.
How God set people apart – those who remember His name.
How Jesus set people apart – those who choose to serve Him.
How God set people apart – those who walk in righteousness.
How Jesus set people apart – those who consider the will of God as more important than themselves.
How God set people apart – those who meditate and honor the will and commandments of God.
Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. (Psalm 1:1-2)
End of the day two things will set us apart –
Our Relationship with Jesus.
Our Witness and Testimony for Jesus.
If any man and woman desire the favor and honor of God, this is it. Walk in the fear of God, love and honor the words and teachings of Jesus. Be diligent and be consistent in following Jesus.
It is a question of what are the desires of our heart, what is it that we take delight in. Blessed are the man and woman who desire and take delight in the words and teachings of Jesus, to observe to meditate and to do them.
As according to the will of God we are called to be disciples of Jesus, to follow the examples and practices of Jesus. We are in a lifelong apprenticeship unto Jesus our master.
In our modern day context, because of governmental regulation for social groups to be identified and registered, Christianity is now entangled with “church membership” and “denominations” and we are stuck with it till Jesus return. But as Christian we are first and foremost “disciples of Christ”. We need to continue to identify ourselves with Jesus to distinguish ourselves as disciples of Jesus.
Lest we forget, Jesus is the original founder of the church. Jesus is still the head of the church. For all the academics and higher educations the church had acquired we still must submit to Jesus. We must remain in Jesus to be fruitful and effective in serving God. The words and teachings of Jesus are still our standard doctrine and practices. Therefore it is important to prioritized God’s will.
When John the Baptist came to prepare the way of the Lord, people were set apart by responding to John’s baptism. They did something to set themselves apart in preparing to meet God. They were getting ready to encounter God on God’s terms and condition. They know they have to make sacrifices to honor God’s will.
That part of river Jordan where John the Baptist baptize people was not a theme park, not a place of entertainment, never a place where people would choose for holiday and relaxation. It was a place where people went to demonstrate their acts and will of repentance, to identify themselves with God’s will and purpose.
It was not surprising the Pharisees who rejected John’s baptism could not make a public agreement about it when questioned by Jesus. Even John the Baptist was furious when he saw the Sadducee coming for baptism and John made his public demand for evident of repentance.
In the days of Jesus and John the Baptist, the experts of the law were missing important points – application, fruits of righteousness unto God and to identify with God’s will and purpose. We are called to stand in agreement with God’s will and purpose by acting according to Jesus’ teachings and commandments.
It is when we practice the will of God we become servants of God.
It is when we practice the teachings of Jesus we are actually following Jesus.
It is when we practice the will of God we bear forth fruits of righteousness unto God.
It is when we practice the ways of Jesus we are actually entering and staying in the kingdom of God.
It is when we practice the will of God we are honoring God.
It is when we practice the teachings of Jesus we are walking in the fear of the Lord.
In these last days, yet again God will set people apart.
In these last days, our only assurance that we are disciples of Jesus is that we actually listen and follow the words and teachings of Jesus.
FOLLOW CHRIST TODAY.