#DailyDevotion The Kingdom Of God Is Different Than The Kingdom Of This World
Mark 10:42-45 42Then Jesus called them and told them, “You know that those who are considered rulers of the nations are lords over them, and their great men are tyrants over them. 43But among you it’s different. Anyone who wants to become great among you will have to serve you, 44and anyone who wants to be first among you will have to be everyone’s slave. 45Why, even the Son of Man didn’t come to be served but to serve and give His life as a ransom for many people.”
James and John had asked Jesus to sit at his right hand and his left when he came into his glory. The disciples were angry with them for asking this, I think because they didn’t think of it first. Jesus now is having to correct their way of thinking. They were thinking in terms of the world’s kingdoms. Who doesn’t want everyone having to serve them hand and foot? Who doesn’t want to be the boss of the show? Well that’s not how things are in the kingdom of God.
The way of the kingdom of God is service. It is to serve people and looking to see their interest are met. It is not about seeing how well others can serve you and to meet your needs. Jesus tells them to be great in his kingdom they have to be everyone’s slave and to serve their fellows. No being a tyrant here and lording things over people. Believe it or not, this is the way God really is with people.
People often think of God as some ogre with a big stick just ordering people around to entertain him. Yet this is not the way God is at all. True, he does want us to live a certain way, but that way is the way he created us for and works best for us. Instead, the God of Israel, our God is one who serves us. He protects us. He provides for us. He gives us strength. He heals us. He guides us.
While we certainly are created to serve God, worship him, praise and give thanksgiving to him, that is not our ultimate purpose for him. Those things are only right and proper because of what God does for us. Our ultimate purpose is to be object of his love. God wants to show his love to mankind. And now, since the Fall of man that is demonstrated to us in Christ Jesus.
Jesus tells the disciples, “Why, even the Son of Man didn’t come to be served but to serve and give His life as a ransom for many people.” John writes in his first epistle, 4:10 “This is love, not that we loved God but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the payment for our sins.” As Jesus said in last week’s gospel lesson from the Gospel of John, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son…” We see here how God first serves us. This is the way it is on Sunday morning as well. We do not go to church so much to serve God but to be served by God. It is only then we give him our thanks and praise.
So yes, Jesus did come to serve us, to be our ransom from sin and death. He came to be the propitiation for our sins as he sheds his blood for us. Jesus came to serve us, just as he always had before his incarnation. Even now he serves us by interceding for us at the right hand of the Father. If God so loves us in this manner, it is right for us then to return the service back to God. We do this in a twofold manner. First, we trust his Son Jesus Christ and his great work for us. Secondly, we love other people as God has loved us with service, whether they deserve it or not. Most of the time they probably don’t. But you didn’t deserved the service the Son has give to you either. This is not a burdensome thing unless of course you don’t believe God has served you in Christ Jesus. Yes, things are different in the Kingdom of God than the world. But the world is screwed up, so why would you want to continue in its pattern?
Heavenly Father, your kingdom is a kingdom of service and love for the other. Grant us faith in Christ that we may receive your service to us in love and faith and return that service to you and our fellow man. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.