Worship Inspires Service
Key Verse: “If any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.”
IF WE WISHED TO PARAPHRASE the subject of this scripture, we would say that he who did not provide for those who depend upon him, especially those of his own household, would be denying the faith and would be worse than an unbeliever. This would seem to be especially focused on the duties of a husband toward his wife and children, since the Apostle Paul has been writing about the qualifications of leaders in the church, which were always men. (I Tim. 2:12) Since God has approved marriage and the family arrangement, it would be displeasing to him to have his servants neglect their duties to their families. They should be careful to follow the Lord’s guidance and the influence of the Holy Spirit in all matters of life. “The wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits.”—James 3:17
If a person who is active in the service of God is negligent in some area which the Father has shown to be approved by him, he would not apparently be living a life as an overcomer. (I John 5:4) This is made apparent to us by the words, ‘If any provide not for his own, … he hath denied the faith.’ The words ‘the faith,’ would seem to include thoughts and expressions of love, sympathy, sincere interest, and care. It would also involve being true to the faith “once delivered unto the saints.” (Jude 3) Faith in the Redeemer’s sacrifice, in our justification to life, in the wonderful promises of God’s Word, and in the Lord and the brethren are all important parts of leading a life pleasing to God. To ignore the directives of God’s Word in any area would be to deny the faith just as would failure to hold the doctrines.
The focus of our lives should be to “present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” (Rom. 12:1) At the same time, the Heavenly Father wishes his people to make reasonable provision for those depending upon them. Our own households are our first responsibility. We are then to apply the Apostle’s words, “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.” (Gal. 6:10) Next to the ‘household of faith’ would come our relatives. Of course, from God’s standpoint, all members of the body of Christ would be members of our own household, and their welfare would be our responsibility. This would be especially true when viewing the responsibilities that an elder would have concerning their spiritual welfare. This aspect of our lesson can be shown in the words, “Ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit.” (Jude 20) This is to be done with a spirit of loyalty and devotion to God and his Son.
What a perfect example of service we have been given in our Lord Jesus, who at all times, and in all matters had a sincere concern for the welfare of others. He daily “committed himself to him that judgeth righteously.” (I Pet. 2:23) Let us all strive to serve him to the best of our ability, and “worship him in spirit and in truth.”—John 4:24