Last night candidates for president vied for notice to gain the power to be president. A few days ago, the President declared indirectly that he was even greater than Abe Lincoln. So, it is in the world, where according to Jesus, those who are rulers use their authority to dominate others and “their great men are tyrants over them.” (Mark 10: 42, God’s Word Translation). Jesus said this, in response to James and John asking him to appoint them to the highest positions in his kingdom. Their self-promotion came immediately after Jesus told his disciples, for the third time, that he would suffer and die and rise again in Jerusalem.
Jesus summoned his disciples to him. The other ten got ticked off because James and John had beat them to the punch. Jesus said, “That not the way it is among you.” The pattern for the Christian life is not self-promotion and trumpeting your own greatness. The model for the Church and the Christian life is to be a servant, that is the measure of greatness. If you want to be first, be a servant of everyone else.
Following Jesus means following him up the tortuous 20 – mile uphill climb to the “City of God’s Peace” where God found no peace, but mocking, spitting, and driven to the execution hill, where the death penalty was carried out.
Don’t be surprised if you can’t find such a servant in halls of power. That’s not how the world works. But that’s the way it is under God’s rule.
See Jeremiah 9:23-24 for further reading.