Loyalty and Discipleship

KEY VERSE: “Beloved thou doest faithfully whatsoever thou doest to the brethren, and to strangers.” —III John 5


WHAT A WONDERFUL commendation these words are, about a faithful disciple named Gaius. It is evident he was one who spent much of his time in serving the brethren, and in the witness of the truth to strangers.

Yes, the eyes of the Lord are upon us and take note of our faithfulness to his truth. In Psalm 101:6 we read, “Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me: he that walketh in a perfect way, he shall serve me.” Here, again, we are reminded that it is only those who faithfully serve the Lord who are the objects of his special watchcase. These, the Lord declares, “may dwell with me.” How precious is the thought that if we are endeavoring with all our might to know and to do the Lord’s will, it means that we are to dwell with him in the secret of his presence. And this, after all, is where we should always delight to be. The psalmist speaks of dwelling in the secret place of the Most High, and of abiding under the shadow of the Almighty.—Ps. 91:1

Proverbs 15:3 reads: ‘The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.” This is most comforting for it assures us that no matter where we are, or what the circumstances might be, the Loin sees both the good and the evil; that is, he knows the circumstances which are favorable to us as new creatures, and sees the evil influences which are arrayed against us.

Character building is a lifetime work. But along with it there are other responsibilities for the Christian. He is to be concerned with advancing the cause of truth and proclaiming the message of the coming kingdom of God. This is in harmony with Jesus’ command to preach the Gospel “in all the world for a witness unto all nations” (Matt. 24:14) as “ambassadors for Christ.” (II Cor. 5:20) His special work in this connection is to participate in the “ministry of reconciliation” (vs. 18), calling out from among the nations the “people for his [God’s] name” (Acts 15:14), teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I [Christ] have commanded you.” (Matt. 28:20) This is the same work, we remember, which so thrilled the hearts of the early followers of the Master, and moved them to such zeal and courage in his service.

What a privilege it is to point men to God! What joy it brings to tell others the good tidings of the coming kingdom, when all shall know the Lord from the least unto the greatest! (Jer. 31:34) For every saint of God, for every member of the true church, here is a spiritual ministry sorely needed by the world. All humanity is groaning and travailing in pain, weighted down by the heavy load of sin, sickness, sorrow, and death. How desperately they need to be told of the blessed Savior who died for them! How urgently they need the peace and the comfort and the assurances which only the true knowledge of God as found in the Bible can bring!

Like Gaius and other early followers of the Master, Christians who have been enlightened by the Spirit of God are motivated to do good unto all men as the opportunity arises, but especially unto them that are of the household of faith. (Gal. 6:10) It is a very special privilege to minister to fellow believers, encouraging, assisting, and edifying one another to establish themselves and build each other up in the most holy faith. Paul wrote, “If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctine, whereunto thou hast attained.”—I Tim. 4:6

The Heavenly Father’s prearranged response to our faithfulness in these matters of mutual responsibility with those of like precious faith is so beautifully stated in verses 3 and 4: “I rejoiced greatly when the brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in the truth. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.”

Dawn Bible Students Association
|  Home Page  |  Table of Contents  |