December 4 - Luke 22:24-30

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Luke 22:24-30 – The Greatest are Servants

The disciples have just found out who the worst of them is … the one who will betray Jesus. Consequently, the discussion turned to who the greatest of them was. Never one to allow a teaching moment to pass by, Jesus took the opportunity to talk about what true greatness meant in the kingdom of God.

Jesus was disappointed in his disciples. They had traveled with him for nearly three years, listening to his teaching on humility versus greatness and still, at the very end, they argue, positioning themselves for power.

This isn’t a new teaching by any means. In Luke 9:46-48, the disciples were again arguing about who was the greatest and Jesus used a small child to illustrate that the one who is least among them is the greatest. In Luke 20:45-47, Jesus condemned the scribes who walked around in long robes and loved being recognized in the marketplace and who took the best seats in the synagogues and sat in the places of honor at feasts. These were the same people who reduced widows to nothing and made a big deal out of their long prayers.

In this world, there are those who live as kings and lords, expecting others to serve them. They are the first and their servants are the last and the least. But Jesus came not to be served, but to serve. He shows the difference between living in this world as a celebrity and living in God’s kingdom. Those who serve in this world will find themselves among the greatest in the kingdom of God.

No matter his disappointment, Jesus ends this teaching by telling his disciples that because they have stood by him and have cared for him and learned from him, they will receive the kingdom. They will eat and drink at his table … at the table of the King and they will sit on thrones over those who seek to destroy them.