The Christian singing group, Acappella, sings a song called Everybody Said. The song (lyrics below) is performed in a humorous manner with a Jamaican accent, but it reveals a very sad truth among Christians. There are so many good works that need to be done in our world for the Kingdom of God but it seems that everyone expects someone else to do them. At what point does it become your own responsibility? So often, Christians look around, see things that need to be done, and then say, “Someone ought to take care of that,” while never being willing to take action themselves.
It is all too common that people within the church will expect the paid staff or the elders and deacons to take care of all of the work done by the church. Certainly, the ministers, elders and deacons should be doing the work of the church, but the Bible does not limit good Christian works to only ministers, elders and deacons. According to James, it is the responsibility of every Christian to go around doing good.
James writes, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” (James 1:27 NIV) He goes on to say, “What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, ‘Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,’ but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.” (James 2:14-17 NIV)
Doing good is also not limited to caring for the orphaned or widowed; although these are mighty acts. There are plenty of people who are sick and in need of a visit. There are Bible classes that need to be taught. There is someone who needs a ride to church or perhaps to the doctor. There is a lawn that needs to be mowed or a couch that needs to be moved. There are even those that are in need of money to put gas in the car so that they can simply get their kids to school.
We are all busy. Everyone has a job, or kids, or ailing parents, or chores. However, it’s not about being busy. It’s about seeing a need in somebody or in the church or in the community and showing your love for Christ by showing your love to others. Christ has called the faithful to a higher standard; a standard that is worthy of the cross. How is it possible to accept the cross of Christ yet reject the opportunity to serve others in His name?
There is a list of deeds which you have done in faithfulness to God. Does your list contain several pages or only a line or two? When the day comes that Christ returns to take the faithful home to be with him, may you hear the sweet words, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
“As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.” (James 2:26 NIV)
Everybody Said by Acappella
Everybody said that anybody could do
The important things somebody should do
Everybody knows that anybody could do
All the good things that nobody did
Well the preacher came to me and said what I ought to do
If I wanted to make my religion true
He’d do it himself but he really didn’t have the time
He said that the duty was mine
Well the deacon came by and said give me a hand
If you want to be going to the promised land
Here is something that I don’t have time to do
So I better give it to you
Well I’m too busy so I tell everybody
The work’s got to get done by somebody
It can be done by anybody
But nobody (nobody), nobody (nobody), nobody did
All the good things that nobody did