A Call To The Remnant

Scottish Warriors for Christ- http://www.facebook.com/acalltotheremnant

“If Anyone Wants to be First, He Shall be First” by Steve Gallagher

Posted by appolus on December 2, 2013

The title above expresses the unspoken mantra that drives much of our Church world. The mindset is that God’s elite are those who accomplish big and visible results. This often leaves “ordinary believers” feeling as though their lives don’t really matter.

The truth is that this man-centered, superstar-driven mentality is “from the world.” We have our iconic celebrities, talented musicians, gifted writers, ingratiating media personalities just like the world does. The unspoken inference is that the important people in God’s Kingdom are those who have achieved fame and fortune. Not only does this “success-is-everything” mentality create a system that is ripe for slick-talking, ear-tickling charlatans, but it also leaves laypeople feeling as if their efforts to please the Lord don’t mean much.

My personal opinion is that many of the accomplishments of famous Christian leaders that seem so huge from a worldly perspective are overrated. I have been around enough famous Christians to realize that they are just people, and from God’s perspective, they aren’t much different from you and me.

One day each of us will stand before Jesus Christ where our lives will be examined. Our thoughts, motives, attitudes, words, deeds and everything else pertaining to the way we lived our lives will come under the all knowing, all seeing eye of the One who did it perfectly. I can assure you that Jesus Christ is not impressed with best-selling books or popular radio programs. He will be looking at the motives that drive people’s actions. In short, He will reward those who truly loved and served other people.

The disturbing reality is that talent has a lot more to do with advancement in the American Church than does godly character. In fact, some of its biggest stars are the most prideful and self-centered people in the Church. I say that because outward success tends to foster pride and selfishness in the best of folks. Fame has ruined more men of God than we can imagine. I know because it could have easily ruined me.

Within the first couple of years of ministry, I had shared my testimony before millions of viewers on The Oprah Winfrey Show and other national media programs. Where does a young minister go from that heady beginning? I’ll tell you where: down!

Let me make my point through a small incident that occurred recently when I found myself seated next to an elderly lady on a one-hour flight. I resisted my natural tendency to bury myself in a book and, instead, “got out of myself” and engaged her in conversation. She lit up when I began to ask her about her children. By the time we reached our destination—which was a layover for both of us—I had the whole “scoop” on her family. When we deboarded, I helped her find the gate for her next flight. With tears streaming down her cheeks, she hugged me and thanked me. Why? Simply because I took the time and made the effort to show her that I cared.

How does that insignificant incident compare to me sharing my testimony before millions of viewers? The truth is that when I appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, I was still very much full of myself and it has taken twenty-five years of being disciplined and humbled by God and being taught what the important issues are in His kingdom to get me to the point where I would take a genuine interest in a lonely old lady.

I believe this is where God is taking all of His people. Jesus said it all in Mark 9:35: “If anyone wants to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.” What this tells me is that the way to make a splash in God’s Kingdom is not to do something big and flashy, but to love and serve other people in your daily life. That’s the way to be first in God’s kingdom.

from: http://www.eternalweight.com/if-anyone-wants-to-be-first-he-shall-be-first

23 Responses to ““If Anyone Wants to be First, He Shall be First” by Steve Gallagher”

  1. Allan Halton said

    “…it also leaves laypeople feeling as if their efforts to please the Lord don’t mean much.”

    Here, I would say, is a large part of the problem– the clergy/laity segregation. We deeply need to see the reality of what Paul talked of in 1 Corinthians Ch. 12– the body of Christ being “tempered together,” with more abundant honour being bestowed on those who lack, to the intent that “there be no schism in the body…” How does this happen? By a deeper plunge in the Holy Spirit. “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body…”

    • appolus said

      Indeed bro Allan, amen. The Body is created by God for God. He has given greater honor to the ” less comely,” parts for the purpose, as you quoted, that ” there be no schism.” In the process of the centuries we have managed to turn that around and upside down and created a new defintition of what the Body or the Chruch is. If the manufacturer created it to work in a certain manner, we should stick to His instructions……………bro Frank

  2. Tremendous article. May we all seek simply to be servants.

    • Allan Halton said

      “May we all seek simply to be servants.” Amen, Greg. That is the original meaning of the word “minister.” Like yourself, I feel this is a tremendous–and much needed– message.

  3. suez62 said

    Yikes, you were on Oprah??? What on earth for? She is a huge New Ag-er! Were you once involved in that? I guess I never read your testimony! Thank God he got you out of that horrible stuff!!

  4. martin said

    Very powerful. I read Steve Gallaghers book “Standing Firm Through The Great Apostasy” and still find myself dipping into it even now. I am just finding it increasingly sad that the church system is the way it is. I am aware more of how entirely different the Kingdom of God is to the church culture. It confines this truly awesome and other reality through its ways and methods.

    • appolus said

      I agree Martin. I have also grown over the years in my understanding of what the Kingdom of God is and how totally freeing it is to walk in His Kingdom according to His word and His Spirit. It is this Kingdom that has turned the world upside down and it is totally radical and counter intuitive to everything of the world………………bro Frank

      • martin said

        Yes. Its also just amazing how the system has got things so radically wrong. Following Christ is all about being humbled and having our edges knocked off us. You’ve mentioned on your blog about the simplicity that is in Christ. Its like something very pure has been taken and deformed. Its no wonder so many sincere folks come away from the system feeling like they’ve been square pegs trying to fit into round holes.

        • appolus said

          Your right Martin, it really is so simple. I think of the example Steve used in his piece about speaking to the woman on the plane. I traveled recently back and forward to Vegas with collecting and dropping off my grandson and had five separate encounters with folks where I was able to share the Gospel in a way that the Holy Spirit has set up. It was dynamic and powerful and actually, as always, thrilling. I know that when we traveled from Atlanta to Kansas we had a very dynamic encounter with a young man. To me this is cutting edge sharing of the Gospel and moving in the Holy Spirit. All that it requires from any of us is to abundantly full of the Lord and His word and out of the abundance of that kind of heart the mouth will speak. And if baptized in the Holy Spirit then I believe one is empowered and enabled to share the Gospel unashamedly and with a passion that is hard to ignore. This is the round peg in the round hole and it feels so good, it’s just right, it is what we were created for…………………….bro Frank

          • martin said

            Yeah, I remember that young man. This is the Kingdom of God reaching folks outside the walls. And it comes from a heart of sincerity in wanting to share Christ. Not as part of some church growth strategy.

          • Allan Halton said

            “This is the round peg in the round hole and it feels so good, it’s just right, it is what we were created for.” Good words, Frank. I don’t know how many times I’ve told people that when it comes to the present order of the church, I’m a square peg in a round hole. It’s wonderful to know that there’s a “hole” we fit in! A tailor-made place in the Kingdom of God for each one of us. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ unto good works, which God hath before prepared for us to walk in.”

          • appolus said

            Amen Martin and Allan. A sincere, abundant heart created by Jesus, His works for His will and good pleasure and oh what joy to find your place and move in it and stay within the sphere of your calling.

  5. Amen brothers.

  6. This is such and important message all leaders (and Christians) need to be reminded of. Jesus was God in human form and He took time to stop and minister to or talk to just one person. He never chased crowds or attention and yet often times so many of us try to make a name for ourselves (all for God’s glory of course) when we know deep inside that we want to get some kind of acknowledgement because of it as well. We need to be humble like Jesus instead of prideful and selfish like our enemy who tries so hard to make us focus on ourselves instead of Jesus. Thank you for this!

    • appolus said

      Amen Anna, if it is all about Jesus, men would share the Lord as passionately on a bus or a plane or in the supermarket a they do on the platform, perhaps more so. I have given my testimony a number of times in churches and it was fine, but when I gave my testimony in a prison to men who I had been just like, the intensity of that had no comparison to speaking in the church. The anointing of the Lord is always for a purpose……………….bro Frank

  7. Leanne said

    My husband has also had a lot to do with many of the big guns in organized church, and he came out feeling sick in his spirit after most of his encounters…The last definitely will be first…These people God is going to use in the last hour will be those who never made it into the big league church circles…They will be unemployed because they spend a lot of their times on their knees and faces and they had no time to work, they will be dead to themselves and only alive to Christ…I love the story of the vineyard in Matt 20 v 6-7
    6 About five in the afternoon he went out and found still others standing around. He asked them, ‘Why have you been standing here all day long doing nothing?’
    7 “‘Because no one has hired us,’ they answered.

    “He said to them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard.’
    So these ones are the ones who have been called (the remnant) to the vineyard in the last hour for the harvest…they were idle because they were ruined for mainstream jobs/church, and yet they were hired by God. They actually in the last hour will receive far more in pay than pastors will ever receive because they can be trusted by God, and the wealth of the sinner will be lay at their feet.
    Its an exciting time coming up, but at the same time sad because of the finality.

    Leanne

    • appolus said

      Indeed Leanne, it is like the prodigal son’s brother. There is certainly an animosity between those who believe themselves to be called and those who are actually called. If the motive is pure, and we speak from the abundance of our hearts then there will be no animosity…………..bro Frank

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