Have you apprenticed yourself to sin or to God? Are you experiencing death or renewal? Who is molding your life – is it the desires of your flesh or the Holy Spirit of God?
In Garretson, I am meeting with a great group of people every Tuesday afternoon to study the book of Romans. This work of literature is considered by many to be one of the most influential letters in all of history. In Romans, the Apostle Paul is explaining and clarifying the Gospel for a group of ancient believers in Rome. It was written over a thousand years ago but is extremely relevant for today.
In Romans 6, Paul makes the point that all of us are either slaves of sin or slaves of righteousness. To look at this from another perspective, we all serve some type of master. This is true whether you are religious or not. You either serve the master of sin or the master of Christ.
Dave Seemuth, in his commentary on Romans, explains it this way….
“In certain skilled crafts, an apprentice works under a master, who trains, shapes, and molds his apprentice in the finer points of his craft. All people choose a master and pattern themselves after him. Without Jesus, we would have no choice – we would have to apprentice ourselves to sin, and the results would be guilt, suffering, and separation from God. Thanks to Jesus, however, we can now choose God as our Master. Following him, we can enjoy new life and learn how to work for him. Are you still serving your first master, sin? Or have you apprenticed yourself to God?”
Below are three ways you can apprentice yourself to God.
- Spend time with Him!
It is truly strange that there is such a large number of Christians who think they can grow in their faith without ever seeking the God they claim to know. If we had the opportunity to meet our favorite celebrity, we would be willing to give up an entire week’s worth of sleep! How come we hit snooze on the alarm clock multiple times and forget meeting with the God who CREATED our favorite celebrity?
How can you possibly be trained, shaped, and molded by someone you never speak with?
Spend time THIS week seeking the God who made you. Be still and seek God through prayer and Scripture. (If you have never read the Bible, I recommend the Gospel of John as a good starting place!)
- Work from HIS wisdom!
An apprentice does not make up how to do the craft. You apprentice yourself to someone to specifically learn the set of skills you need to be successful. How often do Christians (me included) try to serve in ministry without seeking God for a proper understanding on how to do the work in the first place!
I think all Christians (and churches) are guilty of this in some degree. We are guilty of thinking we are “clever” enough to strategize our own way of doing ministry. Then, when things do not go as WE planned, we expect GOD to bless it!
The next time you make a decision, spend time seeking God’s direction! Instead of expecting God to bless YOUR “amazing” plan; seek to pattern your life and decisions after HIS wisdom.
- NEVER graduate!
The goal of a regular apprenticeship would be to learn the skill or craft and then venture out on your own. Unfortunately, many Christians have applied this type of thinking to their sacred apprenticeship. Christians begin their faith attending church, committed to community, and seeking God; then, out of pride and foolishness, they decide their too “spiritual” for these things.
Lack of accountability will ruin your life and demolish your integrity.
An apprenticeship with God lasts for all eternity. You will never graduate from the foundation of His Scriptures, the support of His Church, or the strength of His Spirit.
On a daily basis, seek to spend time with God, work from HIS wisdom, and NEVER graduate His apprenticeship as you “are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another.” – 2 Cor. 3:18
Have you apprenticed yourself to God? If so, what are some other helpful disciplines to grow in the Christian faith? Leave a comment and let us know!