Bible Verses: Learn To Serve Others Is To Serve God
For God So Loved the World
John 3:16, one of the most favorite Bible verses and the first Bible verse one might have been taught in Sunday School. It says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
This verse shows the two things that Christians and even those who do not firmly believe consider important in their lives. First is the love of God which is agape — unconditional love. This is the highest form of love and is one that people want to feel that they deserve. This is shown by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ to die on the cross for mankind’s sin – my sin, your sin, our sin. This is the biggest sacrifice and nothing compares to it. He bore the pain of the sins He did not commit. And second is the promise of eternal life to whomever believed in Him. It is indeed a wonderful promise.
With that, it begs the question as to how do we show a love this big to the one who has given us eternal life?
This is answered by 1 John 3:16 which says, “By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.”
As Jesus has sacrificed His life for us at the cross, we – as believers, those who accepted the love of God – should also lay our lives down in service of others in bible verses.
The Purpose: To Serve Others is to Bring Praise to God
Service is in most innate definition is one of an expression of love. This is also listed as one of the love languages, a common and widely-accepted concept today. In the context of the Bible, serving God is an expression of one’s love to God. But how do we serve God? What are the ways? First, to serve God is to serve others. When we serve others, we bring praise to God and it also encourages people to do the same in bible verses.
2 Corinthians 9:12-13 says, “12 For the ministry of this service is not only supplying the needs of the saints but is also overflowing in many thanksgivings to God. 13 By their approval of this service, they will glorify God because of your submission that comes from your confession of the gospel of Christ, and the generosity of your contribution for them and for all others.”
This bible verse perfectly encapsulates the purpose of service. Note verse 13 which shows the extent of service that creates waves of glory to God, the highest honors that only He deserves.
This is supplemented by many Bible verses.
For example, Ephesians 4:12 which says, “12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ.”
Other bible verses about helping and serving other people are the following:
Galatians 5:13 “13 For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.”
1 Peter 4:11 “11 whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.”
Ephesians 2:10 “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
Romans 12:1–2 “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
And again, we quote from the book of Corinthians, strengthening this purpose of service.
1 Corinthians 15:58 “58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.”
2 Corinthians 1:4 “4 who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.”
Significance: Loving God, Loving Your Neighbor
In various Bible verses, Jesus commanded in Mark 12:30-31, “30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’[a] 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] There is no commandment greater than these.”
The Bible strongly stresses the importance of being of (in) service to others (to one another). If one truly believes in Jesus Christ, he/she will receive the love of God and it will naturally flow in him/her to follow God and his commandments, imitating the works of Christ.
The Parable of the Good Samaritan is a classic example of this which can be found in the book of Luke.
Luke 10:25-37 says, “25 On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
26 “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”
27 He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’[a]; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b]”
28 “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”
29 But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
30 In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead.
31 A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side.
32 So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side.
33 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him.
34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him.
35 The next day he took out two denarii[c] and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’
36 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”
37 The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”
Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”
This is one of the most popular parables and Bible verses taught by Christ and has influenced the way people live. As the moral of the story goes, lend a helping hand to everyone in need even if that person is your enemy. As they say, being a Good Samaritan is contagious. Kindness begets kindness.
Emphasizing the moral of the Parable of the Good Samaritan are the following verses.
Luke 10:27 “27 And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.”
Galatians 6:2 “2 Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.”
Ephesians 4:28 “28 Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.”
1 John 3:18, “18 Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.”
Deuteronomy 15:11 “11 For there will never cease to be poor in the land. Therefore I command you, ‘You shall open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy and to the poor, in your land.’”
Colossians 3:14 “14 And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.
Another Perspective: Jesus Christ’s Ministry
Christ, according to records of the Bible in the New Testament, has taught his ministry through parables and through numerous acts of service to others, leading by example. One of the most notable stories in the Bible that shows this is the story of Jesus Christ and the woman at the well.
John 4:1-26 “Now when Jesus learned that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus was making and baptizing more disciples than John
2 (although Jesus himself did not baptize, but only his disciples),
3 he left Judea and departed again for Galilee.
4 And he had to pass through Samaria.
5 So he came to a town of Samaria called Sychar, near the field that Jacob had given to his son Joseph.
6 Jacob’s well was there; so Jesus, wearied as he was from his journey, was sitting beside the well. It was about the sixth hour in bible verses.
There are many other accounts of Jesus at the service of another — performing miracles, curing illnesses — but this one is notable as it takes one of the ultimate forms of service to God and that is the spread of His love and His Gospel.
It is important to know the context of the story: Jesus Christ is a Jew and the woman at the well is a Samaritan and Jews despise Samaritans. Nevertheless, Jesus Christ reached out to her, accepted her sin of immorality, and ministered to her.
Jesus Christ instructs believers to follow the way of God in 1 Corinthians 11:1 which says, “Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.”
Christians serve because Christ served. Christ was the ultimate servant. These are confirmed by the following verses:
Mark 10:45 “45 For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Romans 5:6-7 “6 For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— “
John 13:12-14 “12 When he had washed their feet and put on his outer garments and resumed his place, he said to them, “Do you understand what I have done to you? 13 You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. 14 If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.”
Debunking Myths through Bible Verses
With the core doctrine of the Reformation (largely contributed to the names of Martin Luther and John Calvin) of salvation through God’s grace alone, some have had misconceptions. The concept of predestination or election by God explains that God has already chosen those who He will save and this through His Grace alone, regardless of any amount of good work.
Ephesians 2:8 “8 For by grace you have been saved through faith in bible verses. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God”
But as discussed earlier, if one truly believes in Christ, he/she will follow Christ and therefore live a life doing good as God commanded.
As stated in James 2:14-17, faith without deeds is dead. And it goes, “14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good[a] is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.”
This is further emphasized in the following verse in James Chapter 2 in bible verses.
James 2:26 “26 For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.