The Servant Class

Christ Washing His Apostles' Feet

What are the traits, characteristics and behaviors of a faithful Christian servant? Well, as you spend time each day in the Word of God and in prayer, God will teach that to you. But this page provides a summary of characteristics you should be developing in your life as you grow more mature in your Christian life.

Make your own attitude that of Christ Jesus, who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God as something to be used for His own advantage. Instead He emptied Himself by assuming the form of a slave, taking on the likeness of men. And when He had come as a man in His external form, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death—even to death on a cross. Philippians 2:5-8

Remember that in this life you are called to be like Christ, who first came to earth, not as a king, but as a humble servant. Yes, I know, it is humbling to be in the Servant Class of society. But it gets worse – the word typically translated servant in the Bible is from the Greek doulos, or more literally, slave (see Slave: The Hidden Truth About Your Identity in Christ by John MacArthur, 2010). But whether we use the word servant, slave or employee, how the ruling class loves to lord it over us, especially those of us who are Christians! But if you are faithful to Him in this life, you will one day reign with Christ throughout eternity.

If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us. 2 Timothy 2:12

Requirements of the Servant Class

  • You Must First Be Born Again
  • Your Motivation is Love for God and His Ways
  • Cultivate the Fruit of the Spirit
  • Reject Works of the Flesh

You Must First be Born Again

Christ washing His apostles feet.

Christ washing His apostles feet.

Before you even think about trying to be God’s faithful servant, you must first become a child of God by asking Him to forgive and cleanse you from your sins. So pray, tell Him you are leaving your old lifestyle and turning your life over to Him. It’s kind of like saying your marriage vows at the altar or signing on the dotted line and taking the oath of office as you enlist in the military. Except that your relationship with God is eternal and far better than military life and marriage (as good as those can be from time to time)!

The consistent message throughout the entire Bible is that no one can get to heaven by their good works. People are sinners. The plain fact is, “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). It is also a fact that God is Holy, sinless, perfect in every way. And heaven would not be heaven if God let sinners into His heaven. But the good news is that God provides a way of escape, a way of forgiveness for your sins and a brand new life through Christ. And who among us wouldn’t give anything for a new chance at life! Christ died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sin. Through Him you can gain forgiveness and eternal life. If you are not yet sure you are a child of God, then take a moment right now to pray to your Creator and get things right with Him. Then you can start serving Him.

Being Born Again is Being Born Into Privilege

If you have not been born into privilege, you know how difficult it is to get into a good school, or get a good job, or be selected for promotion or positions of influence. You may find yourself the object of ridicule, not accepted among the popular “clique” of friends. This can even happen in our churches, but certainly can be the case if you try to live a devout Christian life in a world hostile to the Christian faith. But in Christ, as a child of God, for the first time you have “connections”. In Christ you have personal, continual access to the God of heaven, both now and for eternity. An with that access comes true friendship, true love, and eternal rewards. Without Christ, no one gets into heaven. For the unbeliever, their earthly wealth, position, and power is but a vapor that will quickly vanish, followed by an eternity separated from God. Will you pursue the position and title of Servant of God, regardless of the cost, or do you choose to pursue temporary, worldly gain?

Jesus replied, “I assure you: Unless someone is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. …For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world that He might condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. Anyone who believes in Him is not condemned, but anyone who does not believe is already condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the One and Only Son of God.” John 3:3, 16-18

By obedience to the truth, having purified yourselves for sincere love of the brothers, love one another earnestly from a pure heart, since you have been born again—not of perishable seed but of imperishable—through the living and enduring word of God. 1 Peter 1:22-23

Your Motivation is Love for God and His Ways

The passage below is 1 Corinthians 13, often referred to as the love chapter. You will not find a better essay on love in all of literature. The only proper energy and motivation behind service in your life must be agape love. Agape is the Greek word for “divine love”. It is more than emotion, it is love in the will. It is the type of love that caused God to send His son Jesus to earth as a humble servant to live among us, then to die on the cross for sinful men so that they might have eternal life.

If we are to have that kind of divine, godly love, we must hate what is evil and devote ourselves to what is good and right. Brighten your corner of the world today by reflecting the love of God and teaching others to do the same.

If I speak human or angelic languages but do not have love, I am a sounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith so that I can move mountains but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I donate all my goods to feed the poor, and if I give my body in order to boast but do not have love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind. Love does not envy, is not boastful, is not conceited, does not act improperly, is not selfish, is not provoked, and does not keep a record of wrongs. Love finds no joy in unrighteousness but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. But as for prophecies, they will come to an end; as for languages, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will come to an end. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when the perfect comes, the partial will come to an end. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put aside childish things. For now we see indistinctly, as in a mirror, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I will know fully, as I am fully known. Now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13:1-13

Cultivate the Fruit of the Spirit

Do this:

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law. Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, we must also follow the Spirit. Galatians 5:22-25

Reject Works of the Flesh

Don’t do that:

Now the works of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, moral impurity, promiscuity, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and anything similar. I tell you about these things in advance—as I told you before—that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God… We must not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another. Galatians 5:19-21, 26

NEXT CLICK HERE for more about the Suffering Servant