Text: Mark 9 (Exodus 23-24)
Jesus’ teaching as recorded in Mark comes on fast, and much of what He says is not only challenging, but difficult to understand. As I read this, I underlined a few such passages. One that caught my attention is in Mark 9. Jesus’ followers have been discussing with one another about who among them is the greatest. Jesus asks what they are talking about and they go silent. It kind of reminds me of God asking Adam where he is in the garden after he sins (Genesis 3:9). God does actually know what you and I are thinking and saying – all the time. In that light, Jesus asking makes me smile. Anyway, when they do not answer his question, He says to them,
“If anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all.” (Mark 9:35)
This is so contrary to the ways of the world, which say that the lesser always serves the greater. Serfs work for the Lord of the estate. Weaklings serve the strong. The poor labor for the wealthy. But the ways of the Kingdom are not the ways of the world. The way to the top is always to head downward. “God opposes the proud and gives grace to the humble.” (James 4:6 and 1 Peter 5:5). For us all, the best and wisest thing is always to seek to serve, and to do so with humility. As we do, we trust God for the outcomes – which are always glorious.
in Him, Mike