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Arise & Serve! (Matt [8]14-17)

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Arise & Serve!

Text: Matthew 8:14-17

Place Preached - (Mississauga International Baptist Church)

Date Preached - (07/01/01)


We are saved to serve!

Christian service is both natural and logical to one who has been saved.

LOOK UP & READ Eph. 2:8-10

In Today’s text we see an example of service.


One of the purposes for which Jesus came to earth was to meet the needs of individuals and families. The experience in Peter’s home shows this.

Jesus was entering Peter’s home in order to rest. It was the Sabbath and He had just been ministering in the synagogue, teaching and healing (Mark 1:21-34).

On the way to Peter’s home He encountered a desperate plea to heal the centurion’s servant.

Now He was tired, very tired; He needed rest. Yet when He entered the home, there was another demand made upon Him. Another person needed help.

How often Jesus must have felt that He could not put one foot in front of the other! He desperately felt the need to collapse into bed, but He went on. Note several things.

1. This was an individual in a single home. There was no crowd, (Simon, Andrew, James and John were there) no publicity, no recognition. There was only a simple lady lying sick in bed.

2.This was the very purpose for which Jesus came: to minister.

Matthew 20:28 “The Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister”.

Luke 19:10 “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost”.

Jesus healed Peter’s mother-in-law.

Note what immediately grabbed the attention of Jesus when he entered Peter’s house: “He saw his [Peter’s] wife’s mother...sick of a fever.”

Need grabbed Jesus’ attention. (Matthew 9:18-34; Luke 7:11-17; John 4:46-54).

Hebrews 4:15-16 “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need”.

Note what Peter’s mother-in-law did: she arose and began to serve the Lord immediately.

1). She had been sick with a fever and could have sat around for a while claiming weakness and the need to regain her strength.

2). She was not the head of the house. She could have waited to follow the head or wife of the house. But note: she did neither; she immediately arose and began serving her Lord.

What a lesson for us...

· When Jesus touches us, we need to get up immediately and begin serving.

· When Jesus touches us with power, it is not to make us feel important. His touch of power is for service, not for feelings of self-importance.

· When Jesus touches us with power we are not to wait until others begin serving. We are to get up ourselves and launch the ministry of reaching others for the Lord.

Peter’s mother-in-law had been favored with the wonderful power of the Lord. She could have felt important enough to be exempt from the menial duties. She could have joined the others waiting to be served.

This account is another in a series of miracles that demonstrate the power of Christ and also offer wonderful pictures of salvation.


She was touched – She Arose – She Served (ministered)

How Do We serve Him?  Give Examples

There are several important characteristics of Service for Christ implied in our text…

I. Service Restores Our Purpose

Peter’s mother-in-law had no doubt been accustomed to serving others.  Yet while she was sick she had lost the opportunity and the joy of serving.  Now she had that purpose of her life restored to her by Christ.

EXPLAIN: How we through Adam fell from our original purpose.

LOOK UP & READ Romans 5:12-14

Now through Christ we can be restored to our true purpose.

That purpose is to worship and glorify God, to serve Him.

1 Corinthians 10:31  Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.

John 4:24  God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

Worship and service are inseparable.

LOOK UP & READ Luke 10:38-42

You cannot have one be genuine without the other.

Service without worship is no true service.

Worship without service is no true worship.

Revelation 14:13  And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.

II. Service Reflects Our Praise

Peter’s mother-in-law is not recorded as saying anything.  She may not have known what to say, but here service demonstrated her gratitude, and her praise.

Hebrews 13:15-16  By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.

16  But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.

1 John 3:18  My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.

“We love Him, because He first loved us!”

III. Service Represents the Proof of Our Salvation

As if there were ever any question of the healing power of Christ, all doubt is removed when this lady so immediately after her healing arises to serve.

Likewise, a Christian who serves gives evidence of the saving power of God upon his/her life. 

Works do not save, they demonstrate the reality of one’s salvation.

Hebrews 10:22  Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.

Notice three things about this change…

A. Instantaneous

This woman was up and serving immediately.  She needed no time for convalescing.

ILLUS: The Stormy Sea (no remaining swells, not even a ripple)

ILLUS: The Demoniac (Clothed and in his right mind)

2 Corinthians 5:17  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

B. Complete

It is thorough.  A through and through Salvation!

Hebrews 7:25  Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.

2 Peter 1:3  According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:

Inward as well as outward change.

But we have excuses….

“Not enough time” “Too Tired” “Not Ready” “Someone else does better than me”. Etc.

Everything in Christ is our Provision.

Everything in Christ is our Possession.

Ephesians 2:6  And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

Everything in Christ is our Prospect.

Ephesians 2:7  That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.

1 Corinthians 2:9  But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

C. Lasting

We never read of her sickness again.

Philippians 1:6  Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:

IV. Service Rejoices in the Profit of Others

Peter’s Mother-in-Law was mainly concerned with the betterment, the good, the needs, the profit of others.

Philippians 2:3-5  Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.

4  Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.

5  Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

Conclusion:     (Review)

Let me ask several Questions as we conclude…

Are you living in the restored purpose of God for your life?

Service Restores Our Purpose

Are you praising God daily with your lips and with your life?

Service Reflects Our Praise

What in your life provides evidence of your salvation?

Service Represents the Proof of Our Salvation

Are you living for Christ first and then for others?

Service Rejoices in the Profit of Others

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