Matthew 20:25-28 But Jesus called them to him and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. 26 It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, 27 and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, 28 even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
We have begun a new series this week called Servant. Pastor Lynn tackled two things in this first message. The purpose and reason for this series and a key piece of our identity in Christ.
Our main verse this week is Matthew 20:25-28. In the previous verses, we find the disciples have become angry and frustrated over a conversation that they overhear Peter, James, and John having about who will be the greatest. I love how Pastor Lynn interprets/translates this passage for us into an understandable application. Jesus is among them and He doesnt say, “get this idea of greatness out of your head. There will only be one greatest and that is me!” No, instead Jesus acknowledges this desire for greatness but he straightens out the thinking behind the conversation.
Behind the conversation of who will be great is a method and means of getting this greatness. Jesus points out a worldly value system that says,”the way you become great is by and through fear and pride.” How you become great is to “lord over another and exercising your authority” through intimidation and arrogance. This is not the operating system of the Christian.
How we operate is connected to our values. Our values are an expression of the God that we serve. In this church, we don’t do behavior modification. It doesnt work. No amount of nip, tuck, and tape it will help. We value real change and real change is from the inside out. I change my behavior because Jesus changed my heart. The gospel will touch every facet of your life. In 10 years you will not be the same person. That is the difference between Religion = Behavior Modification vs. Jesus = Transformation. Jesus said, “whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be your slave.” We are the servants of God. Greatness comes from serving not being served. Jesus was a servant of all and He gave His very life. This message on Servant is not about squeezing more out of you in service to our church. It is about awakening the identity of a servant in you. We want to empower you to be free to serve.
WHY WE NEED TO BE EMPOWERED
Many of us are still operating on a faulty operating system. This system has become twisted and distorted with inferiority and superiority issues. If we get around someone who is well spoken and smart we can feel inferior. Then we get around someone who we sense is weaker and not doing a well as we are then we feel superior. We compare ourselves among ourselves. Jesus introduces this new operating system of serving based on love. “Love is a great leveler of brothers and sisters in Christ. We don’t need to keep score. We don’t have to decide who’s better or less. It is possible to be great without biting and stepping on others. Instead of us demanding to be served, the life of God in us leads us to live to serve.” – Pastor Lynn – Tweet That!
Jesus took a band of sinners, fisherman, and tax collectors and He gave them a glimpse of something bigger. He showed how to make nothing into something. It is the tangible effect of the gospel that we can become more than what we are. Pastor Lynn said, “I know that I am watering the seeds of greatness in the kingdom. The power and potential in the room can change the world.”
The enemy wants to knock you off your game. He wants to remind you of your past. He can’t do that when you walk in your identity. There is no greater title in the kingdom. There is no greater position to participate in than to be a servant of Jesus. Jesus identified Himself in Matthew in two specific ways.
- SON OF MAN: Jesus called Himself this. Why would He claim this? Jesus came to change what we twisted. Adam and all humans afterward through the fall became self-serving and self-centered. He was given the power of dominion and used it to lord over others. He took part in a lie that ruined his heart. Jesus came as the second and the last Adam. He set the record straight. In the new creation, God’s children would not be self-serving. He would give us a heart of love and one that loves to give.
- SERVANT OF GOD: Part of our DNA is we are servants. There is a new creation in you. This was said of Jesus: Hebrews 10:9 Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God.” He takes away the first that He may establish the second. 10 By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. We are called to serve. It’s not about pressure to perform. It’s about awakening to your identity. God has some people for you to touch. God has a mission for you. Jesus said, “As the Father has sent me, so send I you!”
Some of our greatest barriers to getting involved in the mission that God has for your life is when we feel inferior. When we think that we don’t have anything to give. When we think we don’t have anything worth sharing. It is not true! Confront that lie. God has not given you a spirit of fear but of power, and of love, and a sound mind. We must become so skilled in love that no one is left behind.
Thanks for Listening,