In Romans chapter one, Paul calls himself a servant of Jesus Christ. Out of the six Greek words for ‘servant’ used in the New Testament, Paul used one of the most slavish terms possible. The word used in this passage is ‘doulos’ and comes from the root word ‘deo’ which means ‘bind.’ Paul literally speaks of himself as a bondman or slave of Jesus Christ – a slave by free choice; yet owned and purchased by Jesus Christ.
The idea of being a love-slave by choice comes from Old Testament passages such as Exodus 21:2-6 and Deuteronomy 15:12-17. If an Israelite bought a Hebrew slave, he must set him free in the seventh year. However, if the slave loved his master and said, ‘I will not go away from thee,’ then a hole was to be bored through the lobe of his ear pronouncing him a bond-slave forever.
Jesus is the supreme example of selflessness – He puts others ahead of Himself.
We see clearly from Jesus’ example, that the way to exaltation in God’s kingdom comes through humility and servanthood to others. Christ’s humiliation, displayed in His coming to earth as a man, is not only a lesson in Christology but also an example to all believers of what greatness in God’s kingdom entails. Let this attitude of heart, taken from the example of Jesus Christ, continue to motivate all true believers in Jesus Christ.
The Creator became the creation; the Lord became the servant; the Highest became the lowest. All of this was done because of God’s great love for us.