Nov 25 2008

What is a Bondservant?

Bondservant @ 6:55 pm

There seems to be a lot of interest in the term Bondservant.  And there is more then one answer to what a Bondservant is.  Many of the New Testament’s authors counted themselves Bondservant (depending on the Bible Version you read, it may say servants.)

James starts off in James 1:1 saying:

“James, a bondservant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ…”

The Term Bondservant here comes from the word dulos.  And is defined as:

  1. a slave, bondman, man of servile condition
  1. a slave
  2. metaph., one who gives himself up to another’s will those whose service is used by Christ in extending and advancing his cause among men
  3. devoted to another to the disregard of one’s own interests
  • a servant, attendant
  • The best definition here is “devoted to another to the disregard of one’s own interests.” On its basic level a bondservant is simply following your master to complete disregard of your own will, emotions, desires.

    To put it into contrast of being a Bondservant of Christ, it means a complete and utter devotion to God, His word, and His will.  It is disregarding your own desires and will in all things to lay your life at the Cross and follow Christ.  It is not being perfect, yet it is a dedication to following God in all things.

    A Bondservant is to love as Christ loved; to walk as Christ walked.  It means standing strong when you are weak and have nothing left.  It means not letting up, giving up, or putting up with anything less then a true and full releationship with God as a friendship and partnership through this world, doing His will.  Being a Bondservant is Standing strong on the Word of God while seeking God first, above all else.  Everything is secondary to your relationship with Him.

    Being a bondservant means taking responsibility of your own walk with God through personal study of his word, and personal and corporate prayer.  It means the Word of God is your foundation with Christ Himself as the Cornerstone of your life.  Its having faith in the best and worst of times knowing that in the end you belong to God. Being a bondservant means knowing only you can stand in the way of a deep and meaningful walk with God. It means you accept responsibility for your walk and bring everything you learn to God’s word and prayer to determine it’s truth against God’s word.

    Being a bondservant means not letting sin get you down.  It means if you fall, you get up, seek forgiveness, and move on learning what you can do not to let it happen in the future.  It is a dedication to purity and seeking that purity through a walk that spans your life.

    Here are some scriptures I think encompass some of the essence of being a bondservant.

    2 Peter 1:1 through 2 Peter 1:12 (NKJV)

    1 Simon Peter, a bondservant and apostle of Jesus Christ,To those who have obtained like precious faith with us by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:
    2Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, 3 as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, 4 by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
    5But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, 6 to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, 7 to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. 8 For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins.

    10 Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; 11 for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 12 For this reason I will not be negligent to remind you always of these things, though you know and are established in the present truth.

    This is a heavy scripture reference. There is a lot of things going on in this. Let’s try and break it down a bit. Peter starts off identifying himself and his station if you will (bondservant and apostle). I believe he is addressing this, at least in part, to those who seek to walk in closeness with God. Now verse two starts off with what really is a promise. Knowledge of God and Jesus brings grace and peace. Why? Let’s move on and see. God called us to Him, by his glory and virtue. In as such He has also given us all things that pertain to life and godliness through Christ. By Christ he has given us promises through His word. By partaking, or putting our faith in His word, these promises; we become partakers of God’s divine nature. Now that’s sounds like a pretty heavy thing but in truth what it really means is that we become more like Him. In the end isn’t that what our walks are about? Becoming like Christ is at the Core of being a bondservant and a Christian.

    Now by trusting in God and His word we also “escape the corruption that is in the world through lust.” By studying God’s word, and being a doer of the word (not a hearer only as James 1 says) we enable the process of growing in our walks and relationships with God. And in truth our walk with God is a relationship. And you cannot grow in a relationship with anyone if you don’t actively participate in it.

    He goes on to list some qualities here that all Christians should be actively trying to develop in their lives. The qualities listed below I believe are very important to being a bondservant.

    Virtue
    knowledge
    self-control
    perseverance
    godliness
    brotherly
    kindness
    love

    Galatians 2:20 through Galatians 2:21 (NKJV)

    20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. 21 I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.”

    When we we look at our lives it should be through the eyes of Christ. This verse is very specific with what our outlook should truly be. “It is no longer I who live” we died with Christ. Our faith is what accomplishes this, our repentance and asking God to forgive us, and accepting Christ as our Lord and savior. “But Christ who lives in me”. This is at the very core of being a bondservant. My life isn’t my own, I don’t live for me but I live for Christ who lives in me. Our lives should be lived in faith in the Son of God. We need to trust Him, to walk for Him, and embrace His will as our own. Why? Because it is no longer we who live but Christ who lives in us. I cannot die in Christ and live for myself.

     

    1 John 2:3 through 1 John 2:7 (NKJV)

    3 Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. 4 He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5 But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. 6 He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.
    7 Brethren, I write no new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which you heard from the beginning.

    Now this doesn’t directly apply to being a bondservant but more as a general rule that all Christians should be mindful of.  You disobey God’s word and say you Know God.  If we screw up and fail, there is forgiveness.  But to walk how you will and say I’ll just repent latter is a no no.  Also you CANNOT just say I am a Christian or bondservant of God and not be obedient to His word, the two go hand and hand.  Lip service or obedience, there is no fence walking or grey areas here.  Sin is sin and obedience is obedience. They cannot co-exist.

    Now you may be asking yourself what’s the difference between being a Christian and being a bondservant, and is their a difference.  This is my opinion, but I would say there is a difference. Being a bondservant to me is about dedicating yourself to the mindset of Galatians 2:20-21 listed above.   I believe that scripture is at the heart of a bondservant.  A total dedication of faith in God, trusting Him and His word.  A dedication to not giving up in your walk with Him.  If you fail, you get up, ask forgiveness and move on and learn from it.  You don’t stay a week at grief motel because you failed once.  It’s a total and complete single mindedness to living life for God.  To having a close relationship and friendship with God and yes you can be friends with God.  Most of all it’s seeking to make God’s heart and will your own, this means love.  God is love.  Jesus’ ministry was founded on Love.  God so loved the world He sent His son to die for our sins.  Love is and always should be our motivator.  God’s love, not our own or the world’s misguided love.  1 Corinthians 13 love.  A love that puts others above ourselves.   A love that’s willing to give more then just a word of well wishing like James 2 says.  A love that remembers those in need.

    I’ve dedicated this site to helping people discover what being a bondservant is.  If you have a question feel free to comment below or see the link in the menu for how to email me.

    74 Responses to “What is a Bondservant?”

    1. Miguel says:

      I think it is very important to know the meaning of bondservant because this takes us to the personality of Christ and others like the Apostle John. For example, we can take a look to the book of Roman, chapter one, verse one, and then to verse16, and we can discover the secret or the esence of preaching the word of GOD to the world…here, in this verses WE CAN SEE THE ESENCE…IT IS NECESARY TO BECOME A BONSERVANT FIRST IN ORDER TO UNDERSTAND THE MEANING OF THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST¡…

    2. Miguel says:

      WHAT ABOUT THE TOPIC OF TITHES?

    3. Bondservant says:

      With respect I have no purpose on teaching tithing on this site. My whole being cries out for one purpose on this site, to teach people that they can walk with God, study and Learn on their own. To teach them to walk with God daily and define their own beliefs through study and prayer of God’s word trusting in the Holy Spirit to do bring them to all understanding in it’s time.

      There are many teachings on tithe, and some that cause division within the church. I will say I believe in tithing. I believe that we should as God has laid out. But I don’t believe that God has tasked us with always being healthy and wealthy. I don’t say that often because some mistake that statement for more then it is. I don’t believe my reason to tithe should be to get. It does not matter if it’s for more money, or health the desire to give to get, claiming and the like is wrong. It is not a godly motivation. We should tithe because the Lord and God of our life has asked us. We should tithe because it is our God who sustains us, because you cannot have faith without obedience. And if God is truly the ruler of our hearts, then that should be enough. It irks me, this teaching because it encourages wrong motives for obedience. People give to get because they want to be rewarded. God is our source for life, He will take care of us as well as he does the birds in the field. Jesus said as much to us.

      Growth, spiritual growth comes through trials and struggles. These can be in many forms. James taught us in chapter 1 that these trials have a purpose and we should take Joy in them. And that is probably as far as I will ever go on that topic. It’s one topic I feel very strongly that people should study and pray about to know what they believe and not Just handed down to them. No man who walks this earth should have so much access to dictating your beliefs that you don’t take it to God’s word and prayer to discover it for yourself. It is the only way you will gain ownership of that belief, until one does, there faith is not in God but the one who taught them.

      • Steve Huff says:

        Let us reason together, you said below;

        “My whole being cries out for one purpose on this site, to teach people that they can walk with God, study and Learn on their own.”

        How does that line up with Ephesians 4:11-12

        11 And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the [a]saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ;

        • Bondservant says:

          I never said that those roles do not belong in the church. They do but no single man should control your access to God. No single man should be responsible for what you believe. That is just putting a man in Christ’s position. He is our intercessor he is our savior and our path to God. Each of us should have a personal daily walk with God. Each of us should be studying God’s word and praying daily. It’s a relationship and one you need to spend time with. I’ve met many pastors who’ve said “follow me as I follow God” But no man is perfect. And many of these pastor ended up leaving there people in a lurch because the led somewhere they should not. It’s a prideful declaration to put oneself in a position over another man and say that. Yet James speaks of not showing favoritism, the scripture you speak of talks of unity in the body. And goes on to talk of the importance of each role. But many pastors want followers for themselves more then they want them for God. I want people to stand on their own feet and beliefs and walk with God and not have to be spoon fed beliefs from a pastor who has no real desire to help members build themselves into self sufficient followers of Christ.

          “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”
          2 Timothy 2: 15

          We have the responsibility to walk with God our selves. To study ourselves and grow ourselves in his walk.

          “26 These things I have written to you concerning those who try to deceive you. 27 But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.”

          1 John 2:26

          The Holy Spirit has the Job of teaching us. And he’s much better at it then any man, the problem comes when man steps in to take over that spot and directs the walk of others to be through them. Not only is that unbiblical it is dangerous, both to the one who is putting himself in that position and the one who is in the position of a follower. It will not end well.

          Teachers, pastors and the like have a responsibility to teach others to Walk with Christ. That walk should never depend on the pastor being the crutch or cane. A baby drinks milk an adult eats steak and Paul has even spoken such. But I will not argue the point further then to say what I have. Only this will not be a good site for you if you think your not allowed to learn of God on your own.

    4. walter says:

      thank you for allowing yourself to be used by God.have learned quite a lot from this site.God bless you

    5. Trés says:

      Although, you say you have no purpose on teaching tithing on this website. Tithing is exactly what I’ve been asking god about. He gave me my answer through your response, so thank you for taking the time to discuss your views on tithing. Maybe you should rethink that one. As far as your sin making you sick, you were born with a genetic illness and that it is crap to think sin made you this way. I too was born with genetic difficulties. I’ve always thought that God made me this way because he knew that only through the trials and tribulations that those difficulties caused me would I ever truly become a bondservant to Jesus. Although I was raised going to church every Sunday, I never truly understood what it meant to be saved until a few days ago. I am now a true bond servant to Christ, but because of my mental and physical difficulties my life has been a living hell. What I didn’t realize until now is that everything I endured was to teach me and train me to be a true bond servant to Christ. Now, and when I came to this realization I couldn’t believe I was saying it, I thank God for each and every moment of it. The suffering, pain, and agony was a true blessing. I feel fortunate that Jesus has chosen me to serve him in this capacity. I’m very eager and excited to have begun this new journey in my life. Your definition of bond servant spoke to my heart. I’m glad Jesus chose you as well. And, all those scriptures that I have read many times in the past causing me much confusion and mental angst, now all make sense. I have such a peace and joy in my heart now like I never thought I would ever experience. And, the more I read and the closer I get the more peace and joy I experience. So, keep up the good fight my brother, and you will win the prize.

    6. John says:

      Thanks for this in-depth overview of this word. It’s very helpful.

    7. Deirdre says:

      Dear Bondservant, Thank you for beaking down 1 Peter 1 -12 so eloquently. It’s a portion of scripture that I have meditated on often and measured myself against and often felt I come short against. Seeing it in light of the commitment as a bondservant take the condemnation off and allow me just to enjoy the freedom of choice I’ve made to be a Christ follower.
      Thank you and blessings for the future.

    8. Trés says:

      Pledge of Allegiance to Christ

      We pledge allegiance to Christ. One body obedient to God. Not just in thoughts and words, but in our actions as well. We are to be devoted to Christ to the disregard of our own interests.
      As bondservants to Christ, our mission in life is to be completely, absolutely, unquestioningly obedient to him and through this obedience bear fruit; as much fruit as possible. We live by faith, but not blindly. We keep our eyes open, continually pursuing God’s plan for our life. We trust in his mercy and forgiveness, and we find comfort in his love. Bless us O’Lord, and with your Holy Spirit continually guide and use us for your glory.
      Amen

    9. James says:

      One key difference between a bondservant and a slave is that the bondservant is voluntary. A slave is involuntary. God does not force us to believe in Him and follow his directions. The ESV Bible translation confuses the voluntary-involuntary aspects of servitude and gives a false impression in several places by translating voluntary service as slavery.

    10. Darryl says:

      awesome teaching. I just taught a class on this for my Bible study and another for mens group. this is great supporting Scripture. I love this. thank you for sharing. God be the glory.

    11. Francis says:

      While the bondservant does labor without wages, he does not labor without provision. The master was totally responsible for the food, shelter, clothing, tools of labor, education…everything. The bondservant was totally dependent on the generosity and mercy of the master…as are we today. Jesus said take no thought what you will eat or wear..the Father knows you have need of these and will provide them. He does this through wages, through donations form others, essentially from others…we cross the line when our supply becomes a demand and our heart shifts to self provision rather than service through faith.

      Philemon had run away from his slave owner. When Paul told him it was the right thing to do to return to his master’s service he instructed him to submit to him as unto the Lord. Paul did not tell him his submission was conditional ased on the willingness of his master to treat him well..Paul instructed the master it was the right thing to do but understood that the servitude he was advising was voluntary on both their parts.

      Paul nor Jesus addressed the governing society they were in…they addressed KINGDOM principles within that society. How to live Godly within the confines of our governing society. No doubt he did not believe it was morally right but he also understood rebellion in the heart was a greater evil. Submission is voluntary but it is not conditional…Paul did not advise Philemon’s master to release him..He instructed him to ‘treat him as a brother’.

      TRES…there was no sickness or disease in the Garden and there is none in Heaven. The only thing missing in both those locations was SIN..all sickness has it’s root in sin be that genetic or environmental..if there were no sin, there would be no sickness…it does not have to be personal sin either..just the sinful condition of mankind..just the liberty of Satan, demons and the work of death in nature itself.
      God is the healer of all sickness and disease…He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities, surely He bore our sorrows and by His stripes we are healed.

    12. Francis says:

      Bondservant, thank you for the writing on being a bondservant. It is very insightful, and much needed in our society. We have the liberty and room to fulfill any call and purpose God has given us, but we also have perfect liberty to pursue any course we choose for ourselves..like having a blank canvas of life and God asks, will you paint what I want you to paint or will you paint what you choose for yoruself?
      I read the biography of Ben Carson and this was his message throughout…that at age 10 ish he heard the call of God to be a doctor and devoted himself to totally pursue that with his whole heart as the Lord led him..and God did an amazing work in him..of if we would only grasp that, what could God do with me, with you, with us?
      Awesome…thanks

    13. Dr. Col Locke says:

      Dear Friend, This is the closest wording, on this web site, that I have ever come across which is close to getting it all together. In saying this I do not hint that it is in the lest bit wrong…. It is not. However may I invite every ones minds to remember that thee are many out there in Christendom…who still believe that they can FOLLOW THEIR OWN WILL/VOLITION and still be a follower of Jesus Christ. This is simply NOT POSSIBLE…just as it says inn the web site above….IF we truly wish to follow Jesus and “Have the mind of Christ” then we do not follow are own human will…for the simple reason that the human will is at enmity with the mind of Christ. This is why we must be “Born AGAIN and take on the free gift of the mind of Christ. If one does NOT take on the mind of Christ …..the “We are none of His.” Put another way. We are not followers of Christ with out His will being that which we strive to have fully as our will. Our VOLITION goes out the window as well. It IS HIS WILL AND HIS VOLITION ALSO we are to follow not our own. The Scriptures are loaded with that truth. Some are simply too blind to see this truth. WHY? Because they are still following THEIR OWN, CARNAL, SINFUL, HUMAN, WILL, VOLITION and NOT the mind of Christ. Therefore they are following ANOTHER GOSPEL of misguided SELF. And NOT the mind of Christ as set forth clearly in Scripture by the disciples. And well presented by the web site above. In Love Dr Col Australia.

    14. Dr. Col Locke says:

      Dear Friend, This is the closest wording, on this web site, that I have ever come across which is close to getting it all together. In saying this I do not hint that it is in the lest bit wrong…. It is not. So may I humbly invite every ones minds to remember that there are many out there in Christendom…who still believe that they can FOLLOW THEIR OWN WILL/VOLITION and still be a follower of Jesus Christ. This is simply NOT POSSIBLE…
      Just as it says in the web site above….IF we truly wish to follow Jesus and “have the MIND(will) of Christ” then we do not follow our own sinful, human, carnal, will…for the simple reason that the human will is at enmity with the mind of Christ. This is why we must be “Born AGAIN and take on the free gift of the mind of Christ. If one does NOT take on the mind of Christ …..then “We are none of His.” Put another way. We are not following Christ but self.
      It is His WILL we are to strive to have fully as our will. Our carnal,human WILL and VOLITION MUST go out the window.
      It is HIS WILL AND HIS ONLY we are to follow not our own. The Scriptures are loaded with this truth. Some are simply too blind to see this truth. WHY? Because they are still following THEIR OWN, CARNAL, SINFUL, HUMAN, WILL, VOLITION and NOT the mind of Christ. Therefore they are following ANOTHER GOSPEL of misguided SELF. And NOT the mind of Christ as set forth clearly in Scripture by God through the disciples. And well presented by the web site above. In Love Dr Col Australia.

    15. Dr. Col Locke N.D.,D.C.,D.O.,Felloow 40yrs Service to Health says:

      One more thing to add, for those who are prepared to take upon themselves the “Mind Of Christ”….Which IS to be a “Bondservant unto Jesus Christ”. Try reading some booklets by R. B. Thieme Jr. such as “The Integrity of God.”You can get it absolutely FREE from http://www.rbthieme.org R.B.Thieme Jr. is in total agreement with us being Bondservants to Gods WORD and The Holy Spirit. That is also why…when we slip and stumble… 1 John 1:9 is so helpful in showing us that God CARES enough to provide a way for us to have the Holy Spirit continues to be that comforter that teach us Gods Way from Scripture. Dr Col Locke

    16. Shan says:

      My husband and I were discussing Matthew 19 a couple days ago. I was looking for his thought or some clarity on making money and what the conversation with the man who said he was living the commandments – what more could he do (he was talking to Christ). Christ said basically drop your life and come with me. It sort of shook me.

      So I have been praying for a little understanding. And I think I was lead here to solve my lack of understanding.

      I am always searching for how to be more Christlike and for some context in my life. This small blog post lays it out perfectly. Thank you for the gift.

    17. Bondservant says:

      Hey Bondservant,

      It’s Bondservant, how ironic…lol I was just doing some studying and saw this page. Awesome to see others on the same page. Send me an email to talk.

      Blessings!

    18. Adam Ramsey says:

      You are missing a piece of what being a Bondservant is. When we accept Christ, and make him the champion of our heart, that is, there are no idols or anything else we love more including things like feminism, humanism, etc., and just have God’s word in our hearts, then the spirit starts communicating with you. It is a process of developing faith, or trust in God, trust in the unseen. You get their by learning to joyfully endure trials. When you learn to communicate with the spirit it guides you like a compass, and learn to ask it before you do any action. I ask it what to have for breakfast sometimes. You start to feel like a slave to it. It is Christ living through you.

    19. Tasha says:

      Thank you so much for the outpouring of this information. You really helped me to build a solid foundation of many things. With this website. Thanks you so much.

    20. Olu says:

      Thanks for this. Having read this, I have asked God to help me to accept this bond servant hood the more and to be able to surrender my will TOTALLY to him. I want to escape the corruption the lust of this world has caused.

    21. Shawn says:

      Over the last few weeks I have been teaching on The Mind of Christ from Philippians 2:5-8, breaking the verse into sections such as; In the form of God, making Himself of no reputation, the form of a bondservant, He humbled Himself, Became obedient to death. During the last 3 weeks we have been on the topic of making ourselves bondservants to Christ and this type of dedication is not accepted by all (in fact only a few) and I have been under scrutiny for teaching this is the type of radical sacrifice of ourselves that is appropriate in response to ALL that Christ has done for us. This page has been an EXCELLENT read and I am blessed by your efforts in sharing this!! Bless you!!

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