The Attitude of a Servant

June 28, 2020

David Sorn

If we forget what our Lord has done for us, we'll never have the right attitude when serving Him.

The Attitude of a Servant

June 28, 2020

David Sorn

If we forget what our Lord has done for us, we'll never have the right attitude when serving Him.



Morning! Here we are, gathered together again!

It’s been 16 weeks since we last met together on March 8th.

And it feels good to see your faces again!

God sustained us during that time, but it feels really good to worship God TOGETHER again!

None of us know what the next few months will hold

When we didn’t meet for the first time on March 15th, many of us thought we’d back together again in 3 weeks, not 16.

But yet, we know that whatever happens here at Northpoint Elementary, there is an amazing thing happening a few miles east of here on Lexington and 125th as our building looks more amazing every day

If you haven’t been over there lately, go check it out!

Can you believe that we’re going to be meeting in there in just 6 or 7 months?

God is good.


Today, as we continue in our series on the Book of Luke, we come to a passage in Luke chapter 17 that is especially challenging to the mindset of the modern-day American.

Jesus is going to speak on servanthood and listening to authority.

We’re not so good at either of those

We live in a world where we are number one.

The vast influence of consumerism has branded this into us.

You expect that if you go into a store, you’re the customer, and you are right.

You expect that if a restaurant doesn’t offer a sandwich or meal just the way you want it, that you ought to be able to adapt it

And if we don’t get our way, many people expect to threaten their way into getting their way

I remember when we were doing our egg hunt in 2019

A woman emailed us and asked if her 13 year old could do the egg hunt (even though it said it was for 0-11).

When we replied, “Sorry, it’s for 0-11, she said, “Well, then I guess I’ll just give you a bad review on google unless you change your mind”

We expect that the world will cater to our preferences.

And on top of this, in our culture, we are so self-centered, that if we do anything good…any kind of service…

We’re just waiting for the world to notice us.

We want a pat on the back from the boss

Some sort of recognition from the club or kids sports team we serve

Many of us are used to getting trophies, certificates, and rewards for all sorts of good deeds

And, if you combine our consumerism with our selfish desire to be recognized and thanked for every small deed, you’ll find that today’s passage runs pretty hard against the grain of our culture.

In other words, this won’t be easy for you to apply.

But if you want to be Christlike, you’ll need to.

Take a look at our passage, just 4 verses today:

While we don’t have Bibles out here, you can still find the passage in our Renovation App

Tap on Outdoor Services, and Weekly Verses

We are continuing on in Luke 17, now at verse 7…

This is Jesus Christ teaching his disciples about what it is to be a disciple…a follower of His.

(Luke 17:7-10) – NIV

7 “Suppose one of you has a servant plowing or looking after the sheep. Will he say to the servant when he comes in from the field, ‘Come along now and sit down to eat’? 8 Won’t he rather say, ‘Prepare my supper, get yourself ready and wait on me while I eat and drink; after that you may eat and drink’? 9 Will he thank the servant because he did what he was told to do? 10 So you also, when you have done everything you were told to do, should say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done our duty.’”


Jesus is teaching on how we are unworthy servants.

When you think of your relationship to Jesus, how often do you think of yourself as an “unworthy servant?”

Now, certainly this passage isn’t all-encompassing on what it means to follow Jesus, but it is a critical aspect of it!

We are servants of Jesus Christ.

So I what I want to look at today is 4 attitudes servants of Jesus must have.

If you’re taking notes, which you can in our app if you didn’t bring anything to write on…just find today’s message in the message tab and tap “take notes”

You might have to set it up quickly the first time, but it’s worth it.

If you’re taking notes:

Here’s the 1st attitude of a servant of Jesus:

4 Attitudes of a Christian Servant:

#1: Servants remember they were in DEBT to God

One of the difficulties of reading this passage, is that we read our cultural history into the passage, and we can’t help but think about American slavery…even though this was written far before those times

And so when the master says, “Prepare my supper,” that tends to rub us the wrong way…

But what Jesus is referring to here is not slavery, but indentured servitude.

See, in those days, when you didn’t pay back what you owed people, you didn’t just get to declare bankruptcy.

In order to pay back your debt, you had to become an “indentured servant” and work for the person you owed… for a year, or two, or however long it would take to pay them back.

They didn’t own you.

And unlike slavery, it wasn’t a bad thing for their culture, it was a natural thing…a way you could pay someone back if you didn’t have the money to do so.

Because if you said, “No, I don’t want to serve you and your house to pay for my debt,” your only other choice was to go to prison.

And so the servant, in Jesus’ scenario, isn’t looking for the other person to thank them for plowing the fields or for getting their supper ready.

No, they are in debt to that person.

They were supposed to pay them money, and they didn’t, so now they are working it off.

And so the servant is not looking for a pat on the pack, they’re just thankful they can pay it off this way instead of going to jail.

Now, think about your life:

We were in enormous debt to God.

We committed so many sins, that our debt to him was piling up.

The difference was, there was no way we could pay it back.

It’s impossible to pay back God, and earn your way to Him.

You can’t work off your debt of sin by being good.

The only way to be forgiven, is to let Jesus pay the debt for you.

By believing He died for your sins and becoming his follower.

And when you realize how in debt you were…

When you realize that you are a few million sins in debt, so much so that you could NEVER pay him back…

And yet, out of love, he paid for your sins with His life…

When you realize that, you’ll want to serve Him.

And you won’t be looking for thanks either.

Because it’s GRATITUDE that gives you the ATTITUDE of a servant.

Remember that…as we keep going.


This flows into the next attitude of a servant…which is quite related.

4 Attitudes of a Christian Servant:

#1: Servants remember they were in DEBT to God

#2: Servants know God owes them nothing.

So, if you were in an insurmountable amount of debt to God (and even 1 sin would be insurmountable)…

And yet…God paid for ALL of your sins, let me ask you something: “Does God owe you anything? Does He owe you anything else?”

What about if you’re a really good person and you do lots of good things for the church, and your neighbors, and your family?

Does God OWE you something for that?


Charles Spurgeon once said:

“What have we done for him compared with what he has done for us? Our service put beside Christ’s is like one single grain of dust put in comparison with the mighty orb of the sun.” – Charles Spurgeon

What if you owed someone 100 million dollars, and they paid off your debt, and then, 3 years later, you washed their car?

Would you expect them to throw you a party to thank you?

No, of course not.

That’s why Jesus says, as you serve God, the church, other people, you should just say:

“We are unworthy servants we have only done our duty”

The Greek word for unworthy is actually a bit closer to unprofitable (you see that in most translations)

The idea is, “I’m a servant that doesn’t bring much to the table”

We have got to think through the Gospel here, because if we don’t, it’s going to mess with your regular, everyday life.

How many of you have gotten mad at God because your life isn’t going the way you want it to?

You had plans for who you would marry, or what your family would look like, or your career, and yet life isn’t going how you thought it would

And honestly, you’re mad at God.

And you think, “I’ve been a “good Christian”

I’ve gone to church, I’m tithing, I’m serving.

Why isn’t life going like I requested?

What’s the assumption underneath all of that?

You have a false assumption that God owes you a good life

No, God doesn’t OWE you anything.

Where do you find in the Bible that God owes you something?

Do you know why Dave Ramsey loves God so much?

Because God’s never been in debt to anyone.

In fact, if you realized that you are just a servant, you’d actually be much happier.

You wouldn’t always be looking at the Master thinking about how he owes you recognition and blessing.

My friend, go back to the Bible…not to the culture.

Listen, God doesn’t owe us anything, but to be thrown into eternal prison.

And yet, in His love, He was willing to pay all of your debt!

I’m just happy to be a servant in His house, I don’t want to live as if He owes me More than that.

This goes back to the gratitude piece.

If you’re greedy and always looking for God to bless you more, you’re going to be both miserable and unable to be a servant.

But if you look to God with gratitude for paying your debt, remember it’s GRATITUDE that gives you the ATTITUDE of a servant.


And it’s easier to be a happy servant in the house of God, if you have this third attitude of a servant:

4 Attitudes of a Christian Servant:

#1: Servants remember they were in DEBT to God

#2: Servants know God owes them nothing.

#3: Servants serve for God’s glory, not their own

Think about this:

The servant is out in the field plowing.

And then when he comes in after a hard day’s work, he’s asked to prepare dinner for his master first, rather than eat on his own.

Now, independent Americans like us, who are self-focused to the core, bristle against that…

And we say, “No, I worked hard, I deserve dinner first myself!”

Why do we say that?

Because we’re living FIRST for our own happiness and glory, not the master’s.

But if your aim, and your attitude is focused on living for your master’s glory, you won’t be frustrated by serving Him.

So why is it that you’re frustrated when people don’t recognize your service?

That they don’t send you a thank you card?

They don’t verbally tell you how great you are?

They didn’t call you to wish you happy father’s day and tell you what a great dad you are…

What bugs you about it?

For most of us, it’s that we want to feel important.

We want the glory of being recognized, and being liked.

We want to feel the rush of pride.

But that isn’t our call in the Kingdom of God.

We are to humble ourselves.

Instead of saying, “How come no one ever thanks me for mowing the lawn or doing the laundry?”

Or, “God, how come no one is thanking me and recognizing me for teaching the children in Renovation Kids the past 5 years??!”

We should be saying, “I am completely undeserving to even be the lowliest of servants in God’s kingdom, and yet, I get to!”

We should be completely flabbergasted that we are in the Kingdom in the first place, not frustrated that we aren’t getting more recognition!

Gratitude is the attitude we need.

I want you to think of some famous person that you really admire.

Maybe it’s an athlete, or actor, or musician (get someone in your head)

But let’s say, before you admired them, you did all sorts of mean things to them.

You maligned them on Twitter

You found their residence, keyed their car, spray-painted their house

And more

And let’s say, they miraculously forgave you…undeservedly so

And not only that, in their overflowing love and kindness, hearing that you were out of work, they said you could be a servant in their household.

And because of their kindness, you grew to admire them

If this was the case, you wouldn’t walk around saying, “Now thank me, recognize me, and make my life better, you owe me for serving you!

No, you’d have so much gratitude for grace and mercy, that you would have an attitude that would be concerned making their life better…

You’d be living for their glory, not yours.


Now, if this was all we had of the Bible, we might say, “This is too hard for me. It’s too much to ask.”

But of course, this is not all we have.

It’s an important facet, but it’s not all-encompassing.

And this brings us to the fourth and final attitude of a Christian servant

4 Attitudes of a Christian Servant:

#1: Servants remember they were in DEBT to God

#2: Servants know God owes them nothing.

#3: Servants serve for God’s glory, not their own

#4: Servants know they are also God’s children

We cannot forget this.

Yes, we were in debt to God

Yes, he doesn’t owe us anything

Yes, we live for his glory.

But despite all of our shortcomings, he still loves us enough to call us sons and daughters.

When you think about serving the master…

Even after a long day of work…when you have a lot of other things you want to do…

Remember, the master is not some grouchy, mean, boss

The master is your Father in heaven…who loves you so much that He calls you His own child.

And, here’s the thing: When our lives are over, and it’s all said and done, “He will tell us, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant”

And we will eat, we will feast, will Him, TOGETHER in heaven, forever.”

And so we serve, but we serve out of gratitude

For what He’s done, what He’s doing, and What He will do!

Let me pray.

Copyright: David Sorn
Renovation Church in Blaine, MN

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