“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind.”
The Kingdom of God is ruled by the trait of service.
The Son of Man came to serve and not to be served.
Yet we think that our time on Earth is supposed to be all about us?
To be a Christian means to be Christ-Like, and to be Christ-Like means to SERVE.
“Are you able to drink the cup that I am to drink?”
This was the response Jesus had to James and John when they asked of Him to sit at His right and left hands when He brought his Kingdom to power. They, and the other disciples, still thought that Jesus would conquer through military might, just as all had before Him. At first, I thought that their question revolved around their devotion to Jesus; however, after a recent sermon, I learned that it was their selfishness. They wanted to solidify a position of respect and power beside Jesus as a reward for their service and devotion. It was about them.
Jesus asked if James and John would be able to drink of the cup that He was to drink. Not knowing the depth of this action, they quickly agreed that they would be able. Meanwhile, missing the point of Jesus’ response, the other disciples were jealous that they had not presented this question first.
The reality is, we are hardwired to seek selfish ambition. It started at the beginning of time, and will continue to repeat itself until Christ returns. Just like the disciples, even our best intentions are often built upon selfish desires. Often, even the “right” things we do can be foiled by our nature.
But Jesus did not drink of a cup loaded with sin, wrath, and death to solidify his power over us. He was already at the right hand of God before he came to Earth to be rejected. He drank of that cup to SAVE us. It is the ultimate display of service. Through ultimate service, He crushed Satan and won our freedom from the sin that enslaved us.
The Kingdom of God is not a place intended for SELFISH GAIN.
It is a place where climbing down a ladder comes before any climbing up or over.
The Kingdom of God is about SERVICE.
“Whoever would be great among you must first be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be your slave…”
This is a direct collision of the world’s view of a successful kingdom vs. what Jesus identifies as the Kingdom of Heaven.
How can I faithfully love and serve, as Christ did for me, when I have a flesh that longs for power and service from others?
When society continues to tell me I deserve comfort and reward for my hard work, how do I steer clear of selfishness?
“Would you still want to go to Heaven if Christ was not there?”
The truth is that it’s exhausting to live a life centered round yourself. We’ve all been there. The more work you put into it, the more you feel you need. You rarely reach the end game, and when you do, you find out how empty it truly is. However, we will be energized by the freedom and joy offered by Christ for taking a sip from the cup of service and self-denial.
The Kingdom of God is not about us
Heaven is not about us
It’s about the Glory of God through Christ