The hurt and harm caused by unfaithfulness when a husband or wife commits adultery against his or her spouse, as gut-wrenchingly painful as it most assuredly is for the person betrayed, even still must be nothing in comparison to the hurt, harm, and pain inflicted upon God almighty by those who profess to believe in and love Him who turn their backs on Him in disobedience and rebellion and choose to satisfy their fleshly lusts at the unfathomable cost of forsaking the Lord.
Oh, how we must grieve and break the heart of God when we make the people and things of this world preeminent (first and foremost, number one, top priority) in our lives. When we make what our flesh craves our first love and adulterously turn our hearts and faces away from Him to worship our idols and gods. When we defy and deny God in order to satisfy the yearnings and cravings of our flesh. When instead of denying self and taking up our crosses and following Him as we are commanded to do, we deny God and take up our lusts and ungodliness and toss aside our crosses and follow our flesh, the ways of this world instead, and the devil’s voice, taunts, temptations, and wickedness instead.
Do we even consider God when we distance ourselves from Him, when we turn away, when we walk away, when we refuse to return, when we won’t even look in His direction, or when we look at Him just long enough to attend a church service, toss some prayers up to heaven, put on the appearance of being “good Christians”, etc., while all along we are enjoying our adulterous affairs?
Oh, how despicable it is for us to forsake Jesus after He died on the cross to pay our sin penalty and was raised from the dead so we could be given the opportunity to repent and turn to Him as Lord and receive the promise of everlasting life. Oh, how even further atrocious it is when we pridefully pretend we’re not doing what we’re doing or arrogantly justify our adultery against God as “not a big deal”.
Friend, this message is not for those who have not yet repented and believed in Christ as Lord and in His death and resurrection and turned their lives over to God and His ways. It is for those of us who have already repented and received Jesus as Lord. See, the reality is that not a single one of us is perfect. None of us follow Jesus perfectly. None of us are sinless on this earth. We do at times fall into sin, and we must, we must, we absolutely must humble ourselves and return to the Lord our God continually as needed.
The only perfect “good and faithful servant” that ever walked this earth is the Lord Jesus Christ Himself who loved and served our Father in heaven perfectly. So as much as any of us might desire to hear the Lord speak to us the words, “Well done, good and faithful servant” when we stand before Him at the judgment seat of Christ, and as much as we strive in this life to live in a manner pleasing, honoring, and glorifying to God, we will do so imperfectly. We will do so with the need for repentance along the way along with a resolve to ever point our eyes and hearts – and words and actions – in the direction of the Lord and His Word and His will and His ways.
There are at least three grave mistakes we can make in all this. We can stay in our sin when we fall into it and not repent as quickly as the Holy Spirit brings conviction, chastening, and correction. The second grave mistake we can make is to seek and receive the Lord’s forgiveness along the way and not resolve to go forth striving to walk righteously in the strength of Christ. The third grave mistake we can make is to fall under condemnation whereby we repent and seek and receive the Lord’s forgiveness but listen to the voice of the devil falsely accusing us of not having been forgiven and of tempting us to get stuck in self-condemnation, guilt, shame, and even possibly returning to the sin the Lord has so mercifully led us out of.
Friend, I believe the “good and faithful servant” is not someone who is perfectly good and perfectly faithful. For all perfection belongs to Jesus. I believe the “good and faithful servant” is the one who continually humbles himself or herself. Who makes and keeps the commitment to ever deny self, take up one’s cross, and follow the Lord. Who repents along the way with cries for mercy and a beautiful, strong, godly, longing and resolve in the strength of Christ to follow the Spirit of God forth as He leads us lovingly, mercifully, graciously, kindly, patiently, and powerfully down the “paths of righteousness” (Psalm 23:3) He sets before us. With Christ alive in us, with Christ alive through us, all for the glory of Christ, hallelujah, AMEN!
“’You shall have no other gods before Me. ‘You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me,” Deuteronomy 5:7-9
“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
“And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.” Colossians 1:18
“He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.” Matthew 10:37-39
Let those of us who have placed our faith in Jesus Christ as Lord ever strive to be His “good and faithful” servants and His Father-in-heaven-loving, Father-honoring, Father-obeying, Father-worshiping, Father-adoring children!
“His lord said to him, ‘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