Summary: The mother of James and John made a special request of Jesus based on her impression of him. She in turn made an impression on him.
1. Mothers Job Interview -- http://www.ijreview.com/2014/04/129697-24-people-interviewed-impossible-job-paying-nothing-found-everyday/
2. Mothers make lasting impressions on their children.
3. Matthew 20.20-28
I. A Mother's Impression OF Jesus
A. Qualities She saw in Him
1. He was Torah-Observant (John 4.34)
2. He was a man of compassion
a. Healings of all sorts, Even healing Gentiles -- Matthew 15.21-27
b. A Shepherd's Heart -- Matthew 9.35-38
35 And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction.36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 Then he said to his disciples, "The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; 38 therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest."
c. The Loss of Jerusalem -- Luke 19.41-44
41 And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it,42 saying, "Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. 43 For the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up a barricade around you and surround you and hem you in on every side 44 and tear you down to the ground, you and your children within you. And they will not leave one stone upon another in you, because you did not know the time of your visitation."
3. He was the Teacher (Matthew 7.29)
B. The Greatness She saw in Him -- God's Messiah-King
1. Her posture -- kneeling and asking
2. She knew of his kingdom
a. Thy kingdom come
b. Kingdom of heaven is at hand -- here
c. Down payment -- more to come
3. She saw fulfilled prophecy in him
a. Descended from David
b. Virgin's birth -- Isaiah 7.14
c. Key titles -- Isaiah 9.6
C. The Potential She saw Through Him
1. Peace with Romans -- on Israel's terms
2. Positions for her sons
II. A Mother's Impression ON Jesus
Sir William Herschel first used fingerprints in July 1858 on native contracts in India. On a whim, and with no thought toward personal identification, Herschel had a local businessman impress his handprint on the back of a contract.
The idea was merely, "to frighten him out of all thought of denying his signature." The native was properly impressed, and Herschel made a habit of requiring palm prints, and later, simply the prints of the right index and middle fingers on every contract made with the locals.
Personal contact with the document, they believed, made the contract more binding than if they simply signed it. Thus, the first wide-scale, modern-day use of fingerprints was started, not upon scientific evidence, but upon superstitious beliefs.
As his fingerprint collection grew, however, Herschel began to note that the inked impressions could, indeed, prove or disprove identity. While his experience with fingerprinting was admittedly limited, Sir Herschel's private conviction that all fingerprints were unique to the individual, as well as permanent throughout that individual's life. Eventually it was proven to be the case.
Mrs. Zebedee possibly made some important impressions on Jesus:
A. She Was Family-Oriented
1. We know that family is foundational to society -- one of the goals of the Communist Party is to destroy families
2. Family is at the heart of mothers
3. She expressed concern for her sons -- their success with Jesus
4. She expressed concern for their service to God (as Job with his children)
B. She was Kingdom-Ready
1. Her sons were 2/3 of the inner circle of Jesus
2. She may have heard stories about him (transfiguration in Matthew 17.1??)
3. She expressed submission to the king -- knelt
C. She was Well-Meaning but Disruptive
A young preacher said, "I was completing my first funeral service in my first congregation on the plains of Kansas. The words of committal for a dear, aged mother had been spoken and a prayer following concluded the graveside service.
"Unexpectedly, one of the sons of the family approached me and asked me to thank those who had been of help to the family during their bereavement. As a nervous and frustrated young preacher, I announced, 'In the name of the mourning family I want to thank all the neighbors and friends who have made this funeral possible.'" That young preacher meant well, but said the wrong words.
1. A dose of reality -- 20.22-23
2. The disruption -- Indignant Disciples -- 20.24
1. Booker T. Washington's Servant Leadership
There is a heart-warming story of Booker T. Washington shortly after he took over the presidency of Tuskegee Institute in Alabama. He was walking in an exclusive section of town when a wealthy white woman stopped him. Not knowing the famous Mr. Washington by sight, she asked if he would like to earn a few dollars by chopping wood for her. Because he had no pressing business at the moment, Professor Washington smiled, rolled up his sleeves, and proceeded to do the humble chore she had requested. When he was finished, he carried the logs into the house and stacked them by the fireplace.