Today is the final post in my “King of the Mountain” series. Over the past several days, we’ve been looking at man’s hunger for power and position, often attained at the expense of others, and how Jesus’ teachings run contrary to such attitudes.
Jesus taught that “‘Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all’” (Mark 9:35, NIV). That is what Jesus told his disciples following an argument concerning which of them was the greatest. I’m sure that Jesus’ statement that day shocked his disciples as they were confronted with a drastic challenge to their way of thinking.
Jesus didn’t just talk about greatness through servanthood. He demonstrated it. I want to close today with a passage from the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Philippian church. It reads like this: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death — even death on a cross!” (Philippians 2:3-8, NIV).
Jesus had, to himself, all the riches of Heaven, but he gave it all up to come to Earth as a baby who would one day die on a cross. That is true greatness!