Bob Dylan’s popular song, ‘Gotta Serve Somebody’, says it all.
During a time and culture of hippies, drugs and free sex this revolutionary title and song struck a cord. What wasn’t so strange, is that it wasn’t new. The bible has told us this from the very beginning of time. Dylan just penned this song during a time of change and free expression. It sounded so revolutionary, hip and right for that era.
We’re starting off a new year, and this week’s message comes to us right on time. It comes from a very small letter, Philemon. In this powerful little book, Paul is asking Philemon to show mercy and grace to a fellow believer, Onesimus. One problem. Onesimus has run away from Philemon, his master. The two men are from different sides of the track. One rich and famous, the other poor and a slave. Their similarity? Both men were Christians because of Paul’s teachings.
Now, you have two Christians separated by societal structures and class. Who are they gonna serve? Do they continue to live as though they haven’t learned another way? Now they should say, I’m a prisoner for Christ and I must serve Him in words, and in deeds. At Paul’s behest, Onesimus chose to return to his slave-owner, Philemon, knowing that he was indeed free. Additionally, Paul reminded Philemon, in this letter, that Onesimus was now a Christian brother and should be treated as such. He didn’t force his will on Philemon either, he appealed to Philemon’s love of Christ Jesus.
Today, we should always stand beside our fellow-believers. Recently, I had the opportunity to do just the opposite. I could have remained quiet, and let my brother be attacked verbally by another person I know very well. The more I thought about defending my brother, the more convicted I became. I chose to stand beside my brother and openly let the attacker know that I stood with my brother, and that I considered him my friend and brother. I disagree with my brother on many political issues, however, I wasn’t going to let this guy call him out and disrespect him. Me and the attacker are of the same ethnicity, that didn’t matter. This all took place on the social media network, Facebook.
Social media is a way we stay connected today, but more times than not, we hide behind these mediums, not taking a stand for Christ, because It’s not a friendly forum at times, and it’s easy to say nothing. Who would know? Besides, we all want to be liked, right? We shouldn’t let people mute us from saying or doing the right thing. Facebook is a medium that is in your face, with people saying all kinds of things, however, that doesn’t mean we should let it determine who we’re gonna serve.
Paul was in prison when he wrote this letter. He could have let Philemon continue to treat Onesimus as a slave, however Paul wanted to let Philemon know that Onesimus was now a brother in Christ. They needed one another, and they served the same Christ Jesus.
Like it or not, ‘You’re gonna have to serve somebody’.
I'm a young senior, recently married, after raising 5 kids. I'm a christian and love to capture videos and tell stories with the camcorder. I love to skate and sing. I love to learn new things. I also love to garden and plant new kinds of veggies. I find it fascinating that people can communicate through blogging the word of God.