January 29, Reading 3 – Matthew 20:17-34

Reading

Audio, Visual

SAA Notes

Jesus taught his disciples clearly about His approaching death and resurrection. Jesus faced His own death with faith! He had to believe the prophets! As the incident with James and John shows, the disciples took a long time to understand. Take heart if you’re slow to understand.

SJA Notes

* God Above, please teach us today from Your word.

“It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Do I want to be great?

Jesus answers the question in a very interesting way, a mode of thinking that should have us _rethinking_ what we understand greatness to be.

Wanting greatness in the kingdom of God is an upside-down inside-out topsy-turvy mindset in comparison to what the world tells us.

The humble servant is great in the kingdom.

The last are first in the kingdom.

The poor in spirit are rich in the kingdom.

This is not the same framework as would usually be in people’s minds when asked the question “Do you long for greatness?”.

We think of fame and fortune, of basking in people’s adulation, of conquering an industry or a world-wide problem or even a nation.

Those are not what makes someone great in God’s kingdom.

That way of thinking is not on the same plane of understanding that Jesus speaks to us.

And Jesus is the key. He is the mould and pattern, the prime and alpha, as an example of real kingdom greatness.

He came to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.

Hallelujah, what a Saviour!

*  Dear Lord,

Please help us to walk in obedience under Your will, even though we continue to wrestle with it.

It is not easy for us to seek Your kingdom Lord God, to seek greatness in Your kingdom.

Thank You that You help us, Your Spirit at work within us. Thank You for Your word that exhorts us, teaches us, chastens us.

Amen.

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