Christian Conduct Series

Lesson 1

Who is your Lord?


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Today we are starting a series of short articles on Christian conduct and what is expected from each and every believer. Yes, salvation is a free gift from God. (Ephesians 2:8) For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God. Yet, with this free gift from God comes responsibility on how we use the gift. Our responsibility is to bear the fruit of Jesus Christ. Without bearing fruit we ultimately prove we really have no salvation after all. (John 15:1) “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. (2) Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. Bearing the fruit of Christ means we have the responsibility to manifest the attributes of Jesus Christ in our daily lives. When we bear this fruit, God continues to try us and test us so that we can manifest even more of Jesus in our daily lives. That is what today’s article is about. It is about helping you to understand how you should conduct yourself as a Christian believer and how we can bear the fruit of Christ.

Most Christians are very familiar with the scripture that says. If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved (Romans 10:9). Many of us probably confessed Jesus and believed in Him when we became “born again” Christians. My question to each one of you is this. Have you really made Jesus Christ the “Lord” of your life?

The Greek word for “Lord” means a person who has authority over others; a master, chief, or ruler. With this definition, I ask the question again, have you made Jesus Christ your master? Is Jesus truly the Lord and ruler of your life?

By the time we finish this article, we should be able to examine our lives and determine whether we have truly made Jesus our Lord and Master in all aspects of our lives. We will also be able to see within our own lives if we are just SAYING that we have made Jesus Lord.

We should all be living for Jesus. After all, His parting words were: Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations… (Matthew 28:19) "Disciple" means a follower, pupil, student, learner - one who adheres to the teachings of the master. Does this describe your walk with the Lord? If we understood that Jesus was our Master, then do you agree that we are then His slaves? (2 Cor 4:5) For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants (slaves) for Jesus’ sake. The early church certainly understood that they were slaves and were sent to do the works for their Lord as given them to do. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them. (Ephesians 2:10)

This is what it means to make Jesus the Lord of your life, it means counting everything as loss that you may gain Christ. (Philippians 3:7) But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. (8) Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ.

The Bible says that our salvation is a free gift from God, and yet there was a price that was paid, a very high price. It cost our Lord and Savior His life and we should now live for and glorify God with our lives. (1 Corinthians 6:20) For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s. Our body and our spirit are now God’s. Is this true in your life? Are you living for Jesus and Him only?

I know that today we often hear about the prosperity message (the “wealth Gospel”) and how we can live our “best life now”, but that is not the Gospel our Lord taught us. Jesus said, “Whoever seeks to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it.” (Luke 17:33) We lose our life by giving up our own fleshly desires in life and live for Jesus. We become a slave to the will of God and Jesus is now our Master. Likewise he who is called while free is Christ’s slave. You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of men (1Cor 7:22,23). We are supposed to be slaves for Christ. Servants who do God’s will, but too often we continue to be slaves to other things instead of Christ. We become slaves to our job, slaves to the things of this world, which in turn cause us to go into debt, thus becoming even greater slaves to this world. In the above scripture it warns us not to become slaves of men, but often times we do just that. We become slaves to a demanding boss, a spouse or even our “old man”, meaning our own fleshly desires in life.

Some Christians are more afraid of men and what they think than they are of offending God. Not the Apostle Paul, he knew who he wanted to please and it was his Master, Jesus Christ. (Galatians 1:10) For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ. “Bondservant is the same Greek word for slave. It seems that all the disciples considered themselves to be slaves of Jesus Christ. (Jude 1) Jude, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James. This word bondservant is the same as slave. As we look at what is expected of us as believers, I would encourage each of you to ask yourselves “are you living your life for your own self and your own family (gaining your life) or have you made Jesus the Lord of your life and living your life for Him to do His will” (losing your life)?

(Matthew 6:24) “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon. The word “master” in this passage is the same Greek word as “Lord”. As we evaluate our walk as Christians, it is important to look at which Lord it is that you are serving. Remember Satan is the God of this world (2 Corinthians 4:3) And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, (4) in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel… As Jesus said, you cannot serve God AND the things of this world at the same time, one will eventually win out.

Many Christians today have become complacent; they have become very comfortable and have chosen the easy road to heaven. Yet, Jesus warns us there is no easy road to heaven. (Luke 13:24) “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able. Later Jesus chastens the church and says; “Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place—unless you repent” (Revelation 2:4,5). We must all evaluate what has happened since we first asked Jesus to come into our lives. Have you grown in your relationship with Jesus and made Him Lord of your life? Maybe your relationship with Jesus has stagnated and you have left your “first love”. Why would a Christian leave their first love? The answer is this: because they have not truly made Jesus their Lord and Master. Instead they have served themselves, served what their flesh has desired and the things of this world.

When we “signed up” to follow Jesus, we signed up for the Lord’s army. Suffer hardship with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. (4) No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who enlisted him as a soldier. (2 Timothy 2:3,4) Does this not seem like a fair price, a fair exchange? That price is just a short lifetime here on earth as a bondservant to Jesus in exchange for eternity in heaven. We must give up our life here on earth if we want to gain eternal life in Heaven. Whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. (Matthew 16:25) Are you pleasing Jesus, the One who enlisted you, or are you getting entangled in the affairs of everyday life? Only if you have made Jesus your Lord and Master can you please God and have eternal life.

Jesus asked an important question to those who followed Him. “But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say” (Luke 6:46)? It seems even in His day Jesus had those who confessed with their mouth that Jesus was their Master and Lord, yet they did not obey what He said. The truth is that everyone in this world is a slave, if not to Jesus than to the devil. Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? (Romans 6:16) It is so important to be obedient to both the Word of God and also the spirit within you; that still small voice that leads you, the spirit that speaks truth ever so softly. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. (Romans 8:14) Our flesh speaks loud and clear and tries to get what it wants, while the spirit speaks soft and leads us to righteousness. It is that still, small voice, the voice of the Lord that we must be obedient too. “Be still and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10)

If Jesus is truly our Lord we will be obedient to Him. If we are not obedient, God calls it rebellion and witchcraft. Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed than the fat of rams. (23) For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. (1 Samuel 15:22,23) When we stand before the Lord, there will be many “Christians” who called Jesus their Lord who will not realize until it is too late that He really was not their Lord after all. “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. (22) Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ (23) And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ (Matthew 7:21-23) These “Christians” were not obedient to that righteous voice of the Lord and were eternally damned. They did not make Jesus their Lord and Master throughout their walk as a Christian.

As we conclude our study, I hope you understand that we cannot have Jesus as our personal Savior without having Him also be our Lord and Master. It is “a package deal” if you expect to enter heaven at the end of your days. Without understanding this aspect of Lordship, it will be impossible to follow the Bible’s expectations for Christian conduct. Our eventual prize is to hear our Lord speak these words to us. “Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.” (Matthew 25:21) 

God bless,

Mark, a servant of the Lord,