02 Jesus Style: Not Lording Over It...
Matthew 20:26 (Last study of Servant was Marks telling) Matthew recounts the same story of the Apostles arguing about who will be the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.
You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among must be your servant and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and to give up his life as a ransom for many.
Switch gears just a little, lets focus on who Jesus is talking to a little more. What does it mean that both Mark & Matthew both tell this story?
1. Rulers lord their authority over the Gentiles (non-Jews)
a. Felt that they were inferior
b. They were not allowed to worship in the same space as the Jews
c. Jewish law did not allow Jews to charge interest on money lent to other Jews but said nothing about charging interest to Gentiles - double standard
d. Not allowed to inter-marry
2. Not so with YOU
b. Founders of the church
c. Writers of the bible
d. The first missionaries sent by God
e. Looked to as spiritual leaders
3. The disciples needs to be servants and slaves to be first in the Kingdom
a. How he meant for leaders to serve. Ephesians 4:12 God gave leaders (pastors, teachers, prophets) to the people for the equipping of the saints for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.
b. Christ put no pressure on the masses to submit to the leader, instead he puts pressure on the leaders to be slaves of all.
4. Matthew 20:26 Christ did not come to BE SERVED but to SERVE even unto death.
a. John 3:16 God loved his people so much he sent his Son to die
b. Christ then loved us so much he was obedient and sacrificed Himself.
c. So if we want to be like Christ we must also be lovers of people.
d. The love and servanthood of Christ is what leads people to Him, not manipulation, coercion or force.
Acts 15:1 & 9 Luke, a disciple of Jesus, is writing to Theophilus and recounting a story of a conversation that Paul, Barnabus and Peter had with some Pharisees, Jewish spiritual leaders, regarding Gods judgment of the Gentiles.
And certain men came down from Judea and taught the brethren "Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved."
So God who knows the heart acknowledged them by giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us and made no distinction between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.
1. The Jews are trying to force the Gentiles to follow rituals and customs they claimed were required in order to be saved
a. The Jews are lording over their "spiritual" authority over the Gentiles.
b. 1 Peter 5:3 Not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock.
2. God knows our hearts
a. This is how he judges us
3. Acknowledged them by giving them the Holy Spirit
a. Recognized them as his children
b. Recognized their salvation as being real
c. The Holy Spirit is the third part of God after Jesus Christ. It is the part of God that empowers us to do his will and allows him to communicate with us.
d. The Holy Spirit is the part of God that resides in us after we are saved. It is what makes our salvation real.
4. Just as he did to US
a. Us being the Jews
b. The Gentiles received the same Holy Spirit as the Jews did
5. Sees no difference between the Jews and the Gentiles
a. We are all equal in Jesus's eyes
b. It is not Christ's nature to show favoritism or to be prejudice towards others
6. Purifying their hearts by faith.
a. Salvation is equal opportunity
b. Salvation is based on our faith not who we are
c. The Gentiles salvation could not be given to them by the Pharisees based on their standards.
d. The treatment of the Gentiles by Jewish rulers (here the Pharisees) went against the nature of Christ
Galatians 3:26 Paul the Apostle is writing the Church of Galatia who were also trying to force the Gentiles to adhere to Jewish Customs in order obtain salvation.
For you are all the children of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
1. YOU in this instance is the believer in Jesus Christ
2. Salvation is the adoption by God into his family so that we are his children
3. In Gods new order we are all members of the family of God before we are anything else.
4. This is the only way God identifies us even if we aren't saved
5. We should also see each person as a child of God first and treat them as such
1. Would we dare try to manipulate or act superior to one of Gods children?
2. To teach submission would a Godly leader force a person to serve him or her?
3. What would happen if we all treated each other like Jesus did and our leaders lived as examples to us?
4. How has submission to spiritual authority in your life brought you growth?
5. Who's authority do you respect and why?
6. When you are in charge (or if you could be in charge) how would you describe your leadership?