Thank You For Your Service (ESV)
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- Format: Folded Tract
- Paper: Gloss Text
- Size: 3.5 inches x 5.5 inches
- Pages: 6
- Version: ESV
- Returns: Because this item is custom-printed to order, it cannot be returned.
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The full text of this tract is shown below in the ESV version. (Do you want to print this tract in a different version than the one listed? Contact us and let us know what you're looking for—we may be able to create the alternate version for you at no charge.)
Some time ago, I was in line at a Subway in a Pennsylvania town. Three Pennsylvania State Troopers came in and got in line. I have always had an appreciation for those who do their thankless task. So, I got their attention to say, “Thank you for your service.” They seemed pleased, and it made my day; I hoped in some small way, I was able to brighten theirs.
When our children were little, we had a carbon monoxide (CO) alarm go off one night. It was late enough to be after bed, and it was cold. Just some fumes from the garage? A problem with the woodstove? I didn’t want to take the risk, so I called the Fire Department. Soon they arrived in their big truck, the responders fully suited out. They were thorough and ran tests throughout the house. It made an impression on me, especially because they are all volunteers. I not only thanked them for their service, but also started making yearly contributions.
Then there are service personnel. Sometimes you see them in uniform; sometimes you just recognize them by a hat or some other identifying item. My Dad was a Marine and WW II vet, so I grew up knowing about that kind of sacrifice and service.
Of course, there are also servers in restaurants, and often their hourly pay is such that they really need that tip. I always taught my kids if you don’t have enough for the tip, you don’t have enough to eat out.
The list goes on. There are all sorts of public servants. Even though the concept of being a servant is lost on some, there are many who are proud of their job and are genuinely helpful.
In whatever category you might fall, thank you for your service.
The Ultimate Example
However impressive all these examples are, though, there is one that outshines all others. The Gospels tell us about it in Mark 10:45: “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Jesus Himself is the speaker here. He’s responding to His disciples, whose concept of greatness was riddled with worldly notions of self-importance. Two of them had just asked to be seated on His right and left in the Kingdom (10:37). But in the spiritual realm—which is the only one that ultimately matters—the way of greatness is humble service.
Jesus modeled this concept like no other. He refers to Himself in this verse as the Son of man.
This title reminds us that the Son of God came into this world in human form. Paul explains:
“But emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men” (Philippians 2:7).
Why did He do this? Jesus tells us it was “to give his life as a ransom for many.” Or as Paul continues in Philippians 2:8, “And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”
“Ransom” speaks of freedom or deliverance accomplished by the payment of a debt. Is there a debt or servitude that we all have? Yes—in a word, it’s sin. The Bible declares, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). It also describes sin’s consequence:
“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
All of this is why the Bible refers to Jesus Christ as the Redeemer. He died on the cross and shed His precious blood in order to redeem lost sinners. He paid our debt, a debt that we could never pay ourselves.
Jesus offers freedom from sin and death. By His selfless sacrifice on Calvary, He became our substitute. He took the condemnation we rightfully deserve so that God can be “just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus” (Romans 3:26). “If the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36).
Remember, this freedom is a free gift. “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8). You just need to be willing to humble yourself by agreeing with God that you are a sinner, and that you cannot save yourself. Then, turning from your sin, in simple faith ask Jesus to save you. “God, be merciful to me, a sinner!” (Luke 18:13) is a prayer He never refuses. “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans 10:13).