In today’s text (Ephesians 6:5-9), we are told to ‘obey (or serve) others, as we would Christ.’ We’re also told ‘there is no partiality with Him—with God.’ Are you hoping for partiality? In the movie, Raiders of the Lost Ark, the heroine of the film gets stuffed into a basket and kidnapped away from her hero friend, Indiana Jones. And as she’s being carried away, she says this: “You can’t do this to me, I’m an American.” It’s a funny line that adds some humor in a rapid-fire, action-packed scene. But I want us to consider what it was she said. I’ve had the opportunity to both live and visit other countries, and this kind of privileged-American mentality seems to be everywhere I go. We live in one of the most prosperous and blessed countries this world has ever seen. Even our poor are relatively well to do by other countries’ standards. You’ve probably heard the term ‘Ugly American.’ It’s in the dictionary. It’s an American who behaves offensively abroad. Part of the ugliness may stem from a sense of entitlement and privilege. I’m an American; we’re the best; I get special privileges.
Now I can’t imagine that anyone here would take this kind of attitude with them overseas. But do we have this sense of entitlement here at home? “I deserve. I need. I’m supposed to get.” My kids like the movie, Emperor’s New Groove. The movie centers around the a character named Kuzco, a South American emperor who acts like the whole world revolves around him. At one point someone says to him, “All you care about is you.” To which he replies, “Yeah. Me. Everyone else in the kingdom gets it. You’re the only one that doesn’t seem to be with the program.” Now none of us would be this blatant in stating our sense of entitlement, yet, we move through life thinking we deserve better. And what God would have us know is that there is no partiality with Him. He doesn’t care where you’ve come from, or what you’ve got, so long as you live in obedience to Him. Do you live and work like a Christian: expecting nothing in return other than the grace of God? No entitlement; no partiality; all grace. Obey and serve those in authority over you as you would Christ.