This year we are covering The Gospel According to Matthew. In the previous post, we covered the request made to Jesus by the mother of James and John. Here is the summary:
In today's very short passage, we saw a lot of doctrine...
1. Jesus was a Rabbi. Jesus taught teenage students (disciples).
2. Jesus had been baptized in Holy Spirit
3. Jesus had yet to take the cup of His death
4. Jesus prophesied the disciples would be baptized in the Holy Spirit and be persecuted unto death
5. Jesus and God the Father are two distinct Beings
Today, we will see the reaction of the other ten disciples to this mother's request...
"24 And when the ten heard it, they were moved with indignation concerning the two brethren."
(When the ten disciples other than James and John heard about the request made by their mother, they were moved with indignation. What does that word mean?)
(indignation is Strong's #23 aganakteo from agan (much) and acthos (grief...to be greatly afflicted). The other ten disciples were very resentful at the attempt to break the unity of the disciples.)
(Again, the disciples were teenagers. This is the response from teenagers that are insecure. If the disciples were men in their thirties, they would have been secure enough to MOCK James and John because they had to have their mother speak for them. The following lesson would have never been taught if that had happened...)
"25 But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them."
(We have extensively covered Leadership on this blog and in Modeling God's Wills. If you are interested in learning what Leadership is according to the Bible, click on that last link and continue through the section of Modeling God's Wills that covers Leadership. There are a lot of Leadership seminars being given in the church today. Unfortunately, a lot of them justify why a pastor can focus on control and authority.)
(We have seen Jesus intended Leaders to serve others...to facilitate the Purpose and Progress of others. This was THE Teaching at the First New Testament Church Service!...which was also Jesus' FINAL Teaching.)
(There are NO immediate benefits to Leadership. We have seen the world's "leaders" are Bosses. Bosses focus on authority and demanding people treat them as less excellent than everyone else. Bosses don't want to be more excellent.)
(lord it over them is Strong's #2634 katakyrieuo "to lord against, i.e., control...")
(Jesus stated the world has their rulers control people and focus on authority...which we have called a "Boss".)
"26 Not so shall it be among you: but whosoever would become great among you shall be your minister;
27 and whosoever would be first among you shall be your servant:
28 even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many."
(Again, we saw Jesus taught God's measure for great was to humble one's self...to be a servant. In God's Kingdom, the rulers are those who serve others and focus on responsibility...which we have called a "Leader".)
(In verse 26, minister is Strong's #1249 diakonos - "an attendant, i.e. (generally) a waiter". One who executes the command of another. Basically, a person who facilitates the Purpose and Progress of another...a Leader.)
(In verse 27, servant is Strong's #1401 doulos - "a slave". One giving himself wholly to another's will.)
(Basically, minister is the "lowest" level in the Church...and servant is the "lowest" level in the world. Jesus was making sure He got across the point: the greatest in God's Kingdom is the least in this world.)
(In verse 28, minister is Strong's #1247 diakoneo - "to be an attendant". Jesus came to be the least in this world because He is the greatest in the Kingdom of God...which is the Kingdom of Jesus!)
(In verse 28, ransom is Strong's #3083 lytron - "something to loosen with, i.e. a redemption price". The price of money that loosed someone from bondage.)
(In verse 28, for many translates as "instead of many". Jesus' life was the price that loosened many people from bondage...His life was paid the price instead of the lives of many. Clearly, this is doctrine: the ONLY way to be freed from the bondage of sin is through Jesus' sacrificial death on the cross...which means this verse was also prophecy.)
Again, this short passage presented several doctrinal points:
1. The proof of worldly ruling (Boss) is a focus on control and authority...regardless of what the person SAYS.
2. The proof of Godly ruling (Leader) is a focus on serving and responsibility.
3. The greatest in the Kingdom of God/Jesus is the least in the worldly kingdom
4. Jesus' life was the ONLY price that allowed people to be loosened from the bondage of sin
Remember, all of this was explained because a group of teenagers got insecure about a mother's request to Jesus on behalf of her teenage sons. If these teenagers had been men or had remembered Jesus' explanation (that took filled Matthew chapters 18 and 19) they wouldn't have gotten upset or had to have this lesson taught again.