The Gospel of Luke:a commentary & meditation

"I am among you as one who serves"

Scripture: Luke 22:24-30

24 A dispute also arose among them, which of them was to be regarded as the greatest.  25 And he said to them, "The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and those in authority over them are called benefactors. 26 But not so with you; rather let the greatest among you become as the youngest, and the leader as one who serves. 27 For which is the greater, one who sits at table, or one who serves? Is it not the one who sits at table? But I am among you as one who serves. 28 "You are those who have continued with me in my trials; 29 and I assign to you, as my Father assigned to me, a kingdom, 30 that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

Meditation:  What kind of dispute were the disciples having during the Passover feast?  They were likely arguing about who should sit in the place of honor at the table.  Aren't we like that!  We want the place of honor and recognition, especially when others will have to give notice and defer to us.  (See Jesus' parable of the dinner guests in Luke 14:7-14.)  Jesus did the unthinkable! He turned the world's value of greatness upside-down and he wedded authority with loving-sacrifice and with selfless-service. Authority without sacrificial love is brutish and self-serving.  The way of greatness in God's kingdom is the way of  servanthood and humility, putting others first in our care and concern.  Jesus willing laid down his life for our sake because he loved us first (John 3:16). He calls us to love as he did, by laying down our lives in sacrificial service for the good of others.  An early church father summed up Jesus' teaching with the expression: to serve is to reign with Christ. We share in God's reign by laying down our lives in humble service of one another as Jesus did for our sake. Are you willing to put others first in your care and concern and to love them with the same merciful love that Jesus has for you?

"Lord Jesus, make me a servant of love for your kingdom, that I may seek to serve rather than be served. Inflame my heart with love that I may give generously and serve joyfully for your sake."

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 (c) 1999, 2000 Don Schwager