Passage of the Day: Matthew 20: 20 – 21 - 20 Then the mother of Zebedee's sons came to Jesus with her sons and, kneeling down, asked a favor 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."
My Journal for Today: If we are seeking Christlike humility, avoiding any natural tendency toward pridefulness, we must combat what John MacArthur calls “the enemies of humility” [see Strength for Today for this date]. Dr. Mac has introduced me (us) to several of these enemies during this month; and today he discusses one of the most common, THE POWER PLAY, which is so clearly illustrated in today’s story from Matthew 20.
We selfish humans – and yes, that includes Christians, unfortunately – often try to take advantage of any set of circumstances that would give us an advantage of control, influence, and/or power. In today’s passage we see it exemplified in James and John, the so-called “Sons of Thunder,” who along with their mother, Salome, the sister of Mary, Jesus’ mom, were vying, with their inside connections, for a heavenly advantage … just in case their cousin, Jesus, truly turned out to the real-deal Messiah.
The power-play of these three clearly pictures any manipulation in our lives to take control in the world and gain a human advantage, especially involving influence. And we must admit it; … any such POWER PLAY is made from only one motive; and that is selfishness. And selfishness is birthed from the oldest pattern of sin on record, which is pride, … the mother of all sin.
As Christians we must learn to see that we don’t need any earthly or worldly advantage. We have Christ [!]; and in Him we have everything we need in this life [see 2nd Peter 1: 3 – 4; 2nd Cor. 12: 9 below; and also Rom. 8: 31; and Phil. 4: 13] …
SCRIPTURE:: 2Pet. 1: 3 – 4 ... 3 His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness. 4 Through these He has given us His very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
SCRIPTURE:: 2Cor. 12: 9 [Paul to the Church] ... But He [Christ] said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.
As a fellow Christian, my friend, we’ve got it all, in this life and in the next (see also John 3: 16 and Phil. 4: 19); so we don’t need to be involving ourselves in selfish power plays for some advantage here in this sojourn of life. Therefore, may our power and living worship rely only on Christ for all the advantage we would ever need.
My Prayer Today: You are everything, Lord! Amen