Siblings in the Faith

Old Testament Reading: Genesis 43 & 44

Psalms Reading: Psalm 24

New Testament Reading: Matthew 23

Jesus, the great King of God’s Kingdom, told us that he came to “serve, not be served” (Mark 10:45). His entire ministry revolved around giving up his life for the sake of those around him and for the entire world. Paul tells us in Philippians 2 that Jesus considered others as more important than himself, and Jesus himself tells us that he was not trying to accomplish his own will, but the will of his heavenly Father (John 5:30). You see, Jesus wasn’t interested in titles, status, or holding a special office; he only cared about serving the needs of those who he loved. Jesus calls us to be the same way, which is completely different than what the world around us wants us to do. We are told over and over to keep shooting for higher and higher status, and for more sophisticated and respected positions, but this isn’t the way things are supposed to be in the Church: we are all equals.

In Matthew 23, Jesus tells us that nobody among his disciples should seek after any title: not “Teacher”, “Leader”, or “Father”. Instead, we are to consider each other “brothers and sisters” (equals), like the apostle Paul tells us in Galatians 3:28: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” None of us is to think too highly of ourselves, even if we do hold official titles in the Church, like “pastor”, “elder”, “youth leader”, or anything else: we are supposed to be like Jesus and only care about serving each other, not exalting ourselves to some high position. We should be humble and lead like Jesus led: by stooping low and washing feet.

This also means that we all have an equal responsibility for the Church and the mission of Jesus to make disciples. It’s not just the job of the pastor and other leaders; it is every believer’s responsibility. We are all supposed to care for what God has given us in this world, since it’s all His anyways (Psalm 24:1). It doesn’t matter if we get to sit in on Board meetings and make major financial decisions for our church buildings; we all have a share in the Church’s larger plan and the later Kingdom of God.

Brothers and sisters, let’s all contribute and serve each other. We will only be as healthy as we are humble. Be like Jesus today and consider others as more important than yourself, and don’t seek after those titles and statuses, even if they do eventually come your way. Our focus should be on loving our siblings in the faith and doing what Jesus has called us to do.

-Talon Paul

Reflection Questions

  1. Would you rather…exalt yourself now, OR be exalted by Jesus later? Why is it only one or the other?
  2. Jesus said, “The greatest among you will be your servant.” (Matthew 23:11) How are you doing as a servant?
  3. What do you think of Talon’s statement: “We will only be as healthy as we are humble”? How healthy, or ill, are you currently? What could you do to improve your health and your humility today?
  4. What did God reveal about Himself in your reading of His Scripture today?

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