Summary: A very short sermon questioning our desire to e discipled. You can't be a follower if you are not following, eh.
ARE WE FOLLOWING
THE EXAMPLE OF CHRIST?
Paul wrote these words to the Church in Corinth , You must follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.” 1 Corinthians 11:1 (CEV)
Play video "Plumb ‘One Drop’" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tYP5gE-kDjY
Towards the end of Jesus ministry, we hear in Matthew’s gospel of a request from Salome, James and John’s mother requesting a special favour from Jess that will give her son’s places of privilege.
20 Then the mother of Zebedee’s sons came to Jesus with her sons and, kneeling down, asked a favour of him.
21 “What is it you want?” he asked.
She said, “Grant that one of these two sons of mine may sit at your right and the other at your left in your kingdom.”
22 “You don’t know what you are asking,” Jesus said to them. “Can you drink the cup I am going to drink?”
“We can,” they answered.
23 Jesus said to them, “You will indeed drink from my cup, but to sit at my right or left is not for me to grant. These places belong to those for whom they have been prepared by my Father.”
24 When the ten heard about this, they were indignant with the two brothers. 25 Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. 26 Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 27 and whoever wants to be first must be your slave— 28 just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:20-28)
Salome was asking if her boy’s, who are thought to be cousins of Jesus on his mother’s side could be 2nd and 3rd in command in his kingdom.
The disciples had an idea that Jesus was to become an all-powerful, prophecy fulfilling super King. But Jesus knew the path he was taking was serving mankind.
Not being a king of an earthly kingdom, he would be a king who was to empower his people spiritually.
Jesus other disciples, reaction to James and John’s Mother’s request was one of annoyance, Matthew says “they were indignant.” They were not happy. Maybe they were a bit annoyed that Mrs Zebedee had asked first, their Mum’s had decided they would ask later in the week? Maybe they thought they could have been in line for one of these positions.
Jesus answer may have shocked them also, maybe their thinking was like this; “for three years I follow the Rabbi Jesus, thinking he is bringing the Kingdom of God to Israel, the prophecies were to be fulfilled, all nations would serve us and he tells us, to be first you must be a servant, to be first you must be a slave, greatness Jesus tells us is taking the place of the least.”
Paul too had to take the place of the least, to being persecuted, ship wrecked, beaten, left for dead. A servant of all, stoned three times, often in danger; Paul begins many of his letters introducing himself as a servant of Jesus Christ.
Service brings an understanding of the nature of Christ, are we following the example of Christ? For serving our fellow man is what it takes to change the world.