One of my favourite Bob Dylan tracks is from an older album 'Slow Train Coming.' The track is entitled 'You've gotta serve somebody.' (I hope I have used the correct spelling!). Anyhow, the powerful lyrics that form the basis of this track is what catches my mind... "It may be the devil, or it may be the Lord, but you've gotta serve somebody."
Human history seems to give credence to Dylan's lyric. People or peoples, are drawn to a cause that they can believe in. Whether the cause espouses humanity or even gross inhumanity, it doesn't seem to make much difference. That observation is perhaps one of the most salutory that we can make about human behavior and the power of 'group-think.' Perhaps this phenomenon is impossible to change, but the way we evaluate it should remain the same.
What are the means used? Do they promote love for neighbour; or is it hatred? Do they respect the human rights of those who are different, or do they trample all over them? Do they promote mercy and forgiveness, or do they major on revenge?
We could easily add to this list of questions. But they make the point. Who is it we really serve?
Jesus' life and teaching always and only promoted love. He taught and demonstrated not only a love for friends but a love for enemies. He taught and demonstrated forgiveness, even towards those who nailed his hands and feet to a cruel cross of wood. He taught and demonstrated mercy, grace and goodness, especially to those who resisted self-righteousness in favour of an honest assessment of themselves before God. And then he told all who believed in him, to go and do likewise.
In such as time as this, the world needs men and women who 'will go and do likewise.' The world needs his light, not the suffocating spiritual darkness that abounds at this present time. It needs his truth. It needs his life. To all those who came to him, he never turned away. That was then, the same is now.
Who will you serve?
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