Yesterday we learned about the Christological groundwork of service that he expects of all followers. It is a call that requires use to imitate and participate in Gods redemptive work in the world. The question from this becomes: “What is the relationship between service and sanctification?” In part, service is an expression of the holiness of the God that lives in us.
This expression is in the form of Agape love that is in contrast to altruism. Altruism is a philosophic understanding of self-sacrifice that one is expected to exercise as a means to prove their existence. However, altruism may help others but does not contain holiness. Agape love is that unmerited, unconditional love that is shown in the ministry and sacrifice of Jesus. Through Agape love, we should live out a life being all that Christ redeemed us to me. It is through Matthew 25:36 that Jesus teaches that we should, through Agape love, welcome in strangers and gather them in as part of our family.
Restating the original question: “How does God use service to sanctify the server?” Wesley understood that through Matthew 25, we strive to encounter the Means of Grace through Works of Mercy and Works of Piety. When we do we open ourselves to the filling of the Holy Spirit and its sanctifying work in us. In addition, Wesley understood that through the Holy tempers of patience kindness, works of sanctification, it allows us to move past the good intentions so love can bear fruit.