Faithfulness and Accountability in the Service of the Lord

Lecture Delivered at CAC Surrey Docks Workers Meeting on 18/04/2012
Topic: Faithfulness and Accountability in the Service of the Lord; I Cor. 4:2, Luke 16:2

1 Corinthians 4:2 – Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.
Luke 16:2 – So he called him and said to him, ‘What is this I hear about you? Give an account of your stewardship, for you can no longer be steward.’

Introduction
What does it mean to be faithful?
Being faithful according to the English lexicon means too be steadfast in affection or allegiance or to be loyal;
Another definition puts it as to be strict or thorough in the performance of duty: a faithful worker.
Reliable, trusted, or believed.

Faithfulness is one of the most important characteristics of God. It is because He is faithful that we can trust Him to do what He has said He would do.

Accountability
Accountable – responsible to someone or for some action; answerable
Accountability – the quality or state of being accountable; especially: an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one’s actions

Every follower of Jesus Christ is called by The Lord to be found faithful in doing what He has commanded us to do. You will be judged on whether you were reliable, trustworthy, and faithful in your service to Him. Being faithful to Him, is so important to your eternal destiny, your well-being, and to honouring Jesus Christ. “Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.” 1 Corinthians 4:2. You are to please God, not man, and are called to a higher standard of trust and faithfulness, always being a faithful steward. You are entrusted with stewardship of The Gospel, which can transform lives. You are to be a good, faithful example of Christ, for the entire world to see. Many Believers today are unfaithful, bad examples to the world.

Since Jesus is not pleased with unfaithful servants, you must always be careful with your words and actions, always being faithful doing what He has called you to. “Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching…” “Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.” Luke 12:37,43. See Luke 12:31-48. Jesus is Faithful and True. He is coming to reward His true servants. Nothing that you have belongs to you. You must always realize that you are a servant, who is a steward of the things and the people that The Lord has entrusted you with. See Matthew 24:42-51, and all Matthew 25. You will be rewarded, or punished, based on your stewardship. Jesus is seeking to find faithful stewards. Many Christians start well, but often lose track and do not finish well. The Christian life is not a sprint, but a marathon race, requiring endurance and patience, staying fixed on the hope of the high calling until the end.

Faithfulness is a requirement for every Christian. We must be devoted and firmly hold to the teachings of the Bible, and live true to its commands. As God is faithful, He expects us to likewise be faithful. Yet always doing right in God’s sight is not easy. But remember, God knows if we are faithful or not, and He will reward or punish us according to our life.

How to be faithful in God’s service;

1. Commitment and dedication and obedience to God’s ordinances – be willing to do everything necessary to achieve set goals and objective. Faithfulness is inextricably tied up with obedience. A faithful person toward God is one who does according to God’s heart, God’s mind. One cannot “do your own thing” and be faithful to God.
2. Personal sacrifice
a. Time
b. Money
c. Talent
d. Assets
3. Prayers and supplications
4. Studying the word to know more of God
5. Submit to authority – God has established various forms of authority in our society (rulers, judges, etc.), in the home (the husband), and in the church (elders). We must respect and obey them as they are God’s servants, working for our benefit (Rom. 13:4-6)

Reward for faithfulness
1. The LORD loves the just and will not forsake his faithful ones – Psalm 37:28
2. Peace of mind: When a man’s ways are pleasing to the LORD, he makes even his enemies live at peace with him – Proverbs 16:6-7
3. Blessings of God – A faithful man will be richly blessed – Proverbs 28:20a: His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord – Matthew 25:21
4. Crown of Life – Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life -Revelation 2:10
5. Promotion and Elevation – A man diligent in his work will stand before Kings and not mean men – Proverb 22:29
6. The Lord honours and richly rewards those who have been faithful in the management of His resources—both temporal and eternal.

What we would account for;
1. 2 Corinthians 5:10 – “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.” (Our deeds and actions)
2. 1 Corinthians 4:5 – “Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.” (this we do in secret and in public)
3. Galatians 6:7, 8 – “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man sow, that shall he also reap. For he that sows to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that sows to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.”
4. Matthew 12:36 – Our utterances – But I say unto you, that every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.
5. Stewardship
6. Responsibilities in the church
7. Relationship with brethren

Prayers
1. We should thank God for counting us worthy to be stewards for him through the redemption of our souls
2. Let’s ask him to forgive us of all our shortcomings in areas where we’ve been unfaithful to him
3. God, empower me and grant me the grace to be faithful to you and to be a worthy servant
4. We shall all stand before God to give accounts of our deeds on earth, let’s pray that our works on earth will not stand against us on the judgement day.
5. Let’s pray that as workers in the vineyard of God, that God will grant us the grace to be faithful to him in the discharge of our duties.
6. God, let me get the earthly reward of serving you and the crown of life on the last day.

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