How Long

John 15:15 Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.

How far into your disciple’s training do you mention being a servant?

With mine I discovered I didn’t have to mention it at all. His heart change admitted he was ready to serve. He was more concerned about effective service than anything. I like that. A servant should be looking to please his Lord, but how can you do that without knowing his Lord’s commands?

I quote John 15:15 here, not because there is a transition from servant to friend but rather that Jesus is declaring that He will make His Father’s will known to us, just as His Father did for Him. So often I hear people make reference to this verse as a transition in relationship. It is not. We are still servants.

Who is a trusted servant?

Who is a trusted friend?

The first is faithful in service and the second is faithful in loyalty. I do not want my disciples to believe that it is OK to give up being faithful in service in favor of being loyal. We do not give up one to be the other.

I see within churches a tendency for service to wax cold. I cannot help but wonder just how much of that attitude comes from becoming too familiar with our Lord. Yes we need to draw closer to our Lord but at what point does friendship take on an air of disrespect?

A tiger will turn on you and bite you because that is his nature. Jesus will not, because that is His nature. What He will do however is stop asking His friends to do important works because they haven’t been faithful in service.

Luke 19:17 And he said unto him, Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over ten cities.

Men rejoice in being called good and being given authority.

I hate thinking I have been faithful in very little.

The Tabernacle

Revelation 21:3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.

John the revelator wrote this thousands of years ago. So much of what we read in Revelations sounds like a future state. Here we are so far removed from that writing, in a future state. Is this still in our future or is this the here and now?

Early Christians had no concept of the church age. They were looking for Christ’s return to be in the realm of “I’ll be right back.” What these words in Revelations might have held a whole different meaning for them. I think they have a different meaning today just because so much time has passed.

So what is “The Tabernacle of God”?

It would take weeks to copy and relate all that is written about this subject. For the sake of simplicity I would like to forego all the details and boil it down to two essentials. The first is that the tabernacle of God is a dwelling place. The second is portability, to go with God.

The issue of creating a temple to house the Ark of the Covenant with its Mercy Seat violated the second essential, portability. I look at the temples as being a focal point rather than God Himself. The issue of going to temple to meet with God and to perform all the ordinances of service was limiting and restrictive.

Do we still do that today? Do we look at going to church as going to God? Jesus came and died so that those chains, limiting and restrictive, would be cast aside, making the Tabernacle of God portable once again.

Now when we gather we bring God with us. You are the Tabernacle of God.