From Humiliation to Exaltation- Greatness cost.|Breaking down Matthew 20:20-28.

I remember many years ago, during a high school history course I took during tenth grade, in which we had to write a research paper on our favorite hero, tell the class about it, tell why, and draw a picture.

I’ve never been an artist, not even the slightest, in fact, to this day, the best work of art you’ll get out of me is a decent stick figure, however, I did my best to draw Jesus.

I called myself, mimicking a portrait that my parents had in our childhood home, but instead of it turning out like the portrait of Jesus, it turned out like Quasimodo. When I think about it now, they both have some character similarities, but physically, not so much.

I knew that the kids would have a good laugh at my work of art, so did I. I showed them my poster, we shared a good laugh, but then I told His story, and received an applause.

They may laugh at you now, but they’ll applaud you later.

Jesus went from humiliation to exaltation.

Jesus always knew that He was great, but the world did not.

You may have always knew that you were great, but the people around you, did or even now, does not.

It’s going to cost.

The mother of James and John Zebedee, two disciples, asked Jesus to allow her sons to sit on the right and left side of Him in His Kingdom. This position means that they would be the most powerful.

Jesus told the woman, “You don’t know what you are asking.” Have you ever heard the saying, “Be careful of what you ask God, because He just might give it to you?”

Again, it’s going to cost.

Jesus then asked the two disciples, “Are you able to drink from the cup that I drink from?” The disciples said yes, and Jesus told them, you will drink from my cup, and you will be in my Kingdom, but the power to put you at my right and left side is only given by my Father.

The other disciples were upset about this. I know that they were thinking, what makes them so special. It’s kind of like some people do these days. They look at other people’s status or material gain and become jealous.

They see those people glory, but not their story.

After seeing that the other disciples felt some type of way, this is what Jesus had to say.

Matthew 20:25-28

25 Jesus called the apostles and said, “You know that the rulers of nations have absolute power over people and their officials have absolute authority over people. 26 But that’s not the way it’s going to be among you. Whoever wants to become great among you will be your servant. 27 Whoever wants to be most important among you will be your slave. 28 It’s the same way with the Son of Man. He didn’t come so that others could serve him. He came to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many people.”

Greatness cost, and the price isn’t cheap. When James and John agreed that they could drink from the cup of Jesus, they didn’t fully understand what they were signing up for at the time.

Oftentimes, we are like the two disciples. We want the rank, position, and titles. We want the recognition, power, and nice things, but we don’t want the struggles, the pain, and the mockery that comes along with it.

We want the glory, but we do not want to pay the cost.

We want to be in a position of leadership, but the greatest leader of all, Jesus, was a servant.

Jesus came to serve, and God exalted Him. Not that He wasn’t already great, but He endured the worst of the worst. He obeyed God and He payed the cost by dying for us and defeating the grave, and then God raised Him up where now He sits on God’s right side, where He reigns for eternity with our Father.

Are you willing to pay the cost? Are you willing to go through your own personal struggles, pain, and humiliation? Are you able to serve others with the love of Christ? Are you willing to believe God and obey Him even when it feels like God has forsaken you? Because Jesus did all of this.

We must carry our cross, just as He did.

Jesus didn’t become great, after the cross. He was born great. Those of us in Christ are reborn into that same greatness, but that doesn’t mean we are exempt from the troubles of life. Although we may experience these things, we are not alone, God is with us, just as He was with Jesus.

If we press through with His Spirit, God will exalt us in due time. That is His Word.

James 4:10

Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will exalt you.


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