Monday, December 3, 2018

Who is the Greatest?

"Also, a dispute arose among them as to which of them was considered to be greatest" (Luke 22:24).

One of the most painful things a manager must face is having those working for him vying for positions in the sun instead of acting like a team. Depressing as such behavior is, imagine how Jesus felt when, during His last hours before the agony of the cross, the disciples began to wrangle among themselves over who was the greatest. Surely their behavior reveals the depth of human corruption.

Jesus told them that the Gentile kings lord it over their people, while demanding to be called gracious names like “Benefactor.” Jesus’ disciples were not to be like that. Instead, the greatest should be as the least, and the ruler should be as a servant. Jesus pointed out that He had assumed the posture of a servant among them. In John’s Gospel, we read that He even washed the disciples’ feet (John 13).

Jesus continued with His gentle rebuke by reminding them that He was conferring on them a kingdom just as the one the Father had conferred on Him. In other words, it was not their kingdom, it was the Father’s; it was not their glory, it was Jesus’. The Lord reminded them that they would share in His glory, thus, there was no need to compete when the amount of glory is infinite.

After David became king, he wanted to know if there was anyone left of his friend Jonathan’s household. Messengers searched the land, and finally found one man, a cripple named Mephibosheth. David brought him to the palace and had him eat from the king’s table from then on (2 Samuel 9). Was this because Mephibosheth was a wonderful person? No, it was because of David’s love for Jonathan. Just so, because of Jesus’ love for us, God lets us, cripples like Mephibosheth, eat at the King’s table. It has nothing to do with our vying for glory and status. Rather, it is a gracious gift of God.

How unfortunate that we still witness people vying for positions of glory and honor within the church. Serving and thinking of others as more important than oneself are often foreign ideas among Christians. Honor Christ today by your zeal for love and good works, even though they be unnoticed by your peers or associates.