Moreover, it is required of stewards that they be found faithful.” (1Cor 4:2)
During a decade of sales, I met four times a year with the boss to review my activities and my sales progress. Each year, a plan was set out and goals were assigned. Those goals were my responsibility; accountability was required. In other words, I was a steward of my assignments. This truth is illustrated in Luke 16:2 when an unfaithful steward was called on the carpet and it was said to him, “Give an account of your stewardship!” He failed with what was entrusted to him.
What is a steward? It is someone who manages another’s property or estate, something entrusted to him. “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace” (1Peter 4:10). Is that in view with the Lord Jesus? Yes, He is God, the eternal Son, but He made Himself a servant to His Father, His God, and then served His people.
It is said that the best leader is one who leads by example. Acts 1:1 reminds us of the order connected with Christ: “the things He began to do and to teach.” He first did a thing before He taught others to do it, always the perfect example in everything. Let us follow His footsteps!
Our text says that a steward must be found or “discovered to be” faithful. It means that he is worthy of trust, is dependable, and inspires trust and faith in others. The description of Christ’s faithfulness stands out in Scripture and is intimately tied to His stewardship. Trying to describe all the things the Lord Jesus did is impossible, and in them all He displayed His perfect stewardship, His absolute trustworthiness. Everything He did was for the Father and the record is there to study and imitate. Let us follow His faithfulness!
Steward of Creation
“Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good” (1Peter 4:19). “… upholding (sustaining, guiding) all things (the universe) by the word of His power” (Heb 1:3). Do you ever look at God’s creation, its complexity, beauty, and artistry? How amazing and breathtaking! He watches over it and sustains it and keeps it all together.
Steward of Divine Promises
God’s promises are so precious and unfailingly trustworthy. “If we are faithless, He remains faithful – for He cannot deny Himself” (2Tim 2:13, ESV). “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He Who promised is faithful” (Heb 10:23). “By faith Sarah … considered Him faithful who had promised” (Heb 11:11).
Steward of the Divine Mission
“Jesus said to them, ‘My food is to do the will of Him Who sent Me and to accomplish His work’”(John 4:34). “I always do the things that are pleasing to Him” (John 8:29). “I have glorified Thee on earth, having accomplished the work that Thou gavest Me to do” (John 17:4). “Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come; in the scroll of the book it is written of Me: I delight to do Thy will, O My God’” (Psa 40:7-8, ESV). It is wonderful to think of the sheer delight the Lord had in doing and finishing the work that the Father had given to Him to do. His goal was to bring pleasure to the Father in spite of the awfulness He had to face. “It was the will of the Lord to crush Him” (Isa 53:10).
Steward of Time
Often, we read verses that say “in due time” or “just at the right time.” Everything the Lord did was perfect in its timing; He never wasted time. “My Father is working until now, and I am working. … For the works that the Father has given Me to accomplish, the very works that I am doing, bear witness about Me that the Father has sent Me” (John 5:17, 36). “I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; night is coming, when no one can work” (John 9:4).
Steward of Divine Judgment
“The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son” (John 5:22). “When I saw Him, I fell at His feet as though dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying … I have the keys of Death and Hades”(Rev 1:17-18). “All things have been handed over to Me by my Father” (Matt 11:27). The execution of judgment committed to Him will be after longsuffering and will be absolutely just.
Steward of God’s Children, His Sheep
Jesus is ever the tender and compassionate One. “I am the good shepherd. I know My own and My own know Me … I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. I and the Father are one” (John 10:14, 27-30, ESV). “All Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine, and I am glorified in them. … Holy Father, keep them in Your name … While I was with them, I kept them in Your name, which you have given Me. I have guarded them, and not one of them has been lost except the son of destruction, that the Scripture might be fulfilled”(John 17:10-12, ESV).
Not only is the Lord Jesus the steward of His own sheep, His people, but He is the perfect steward of all the things that we give to Him. “I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day” (2Tim 1:12). Thank God, He keeps our soul, our salvation, the gospel, and our service. He lets nothing fail but is always worthy of our trust!