The Service of the Son of Man

Posted: April 28, 2014 in Mark

Mark 10:32-45, “The Service of the Son of Man”

Have you ever suffered with foot-in-mouth disease?  Perhaps gotten to appreciate the subtleties between the tastes of various types of shoe leathers?  Some of us have a knack for saying the wrong thing at the wrong time.  All of us have done it on occasion – some of us just a bit more than others.

James and John got to know a bit of the taste of sandal-leather in our text.  The disciples are no different from the rest of us.  They knew Jesus personally and up-close, but they were just as human as all of us are as well, and thus they were just as susceptible to saying the wrong thing.  Peter knew it often, and this time it’s the sons of Zebedee’s turn.  The time could not be more serious for Jesus, as He is about to enter into Jerusalem to go to His suffering and death, and He takes one final opportunity to prepare the disciples for what it about to take place.  And then out of left-field, James and John start asking about table-seating in the kingdom.  They seemingly have no regard for the service of the Son of Man on their behalf; they are selfishly fixated on the glories that await them.

Isn’t that the way it so often is with us?  We love to think about the glories of the kingdom.  We talk about it, sing songs about it, anticipate it – all for good reason: it will be wonderful!  But sometimes we can start to lose perspective.  Instead of it being about Jesus, it’s starts being about us.  Instead of looking to magnify His glory by serving others, we try to magnify our own glory by serving ourselves.  We even look to our own prosperity now, our own good things now, our own blessings now – whatever we can get, right here, right now.  And in doing so, we miss the point.  There is glory to come, but it comes at a cost: the abject servitude of the Son of Man.

Let’s remember our context: on His way south to Jerusalem, Jesus had warned of divisions among the disciples (when John had stopped someone from casting out demons while using the name of Jesus) – He had warned of the disciples potentially stumbling one another – He had been tested by the Pharisees regarding God’s allowance of divorce.  Finally, Jesus had an encounter with the young man famously known as the rich young ruler.  This man was unwilling to surrender everything to follow Jesus, but the other 12 disciples had.  What is it that they would gain?  Jesus promised them inheritance and eternal life. 

But with the promise comes a sacrifice.  It’s not those who try to promote themselves that will experience the glory of God; it’s those who make themselves last & serve.  This is what Jesus did for us, and this is what we are to do for one another.

Mark 10:32–45
32 Now they were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was going before them; and they were amazed. And as they followed they were afraid. Then He took the twelve aside again and began to tell them the things that would happen to Him:

  • They are all on the road to Jerusalem, and Jesus is leading the way.  One would think that a person headed to certain suffering and death might take things a bit slower – perhaps even drag His heels somewhat.  Not Jesus.  Jesus proceeds purposefully and resolutely to the cross.  Not only did He need to be timely in order that prophecy be fulfilled (His crucifixion needed to coincide with the Passover), but it’s more basic than that: Jesus was simply determined.  THIS was the reason He had come, and there was no delay.  He purposefully and willingly went to Jerusalem in accordance with the will of His Father, and out of love for us.
  • Mark adds an interesting detail omitted by Matthew and Luke: those who followed the resolute Jesus were “amazed…[and] afraid.”  There is a possibility that there are two groups in view, each with a slightly different reaction.  (1) The amazed 12 disciples, and (2) the fearful crowd-at-large.  Of course the immediate context is regarding the disciples, as Jesus told them what they (and anyone who gave up everything to follow Jesus) could expect in the kingdom, so there is no doubt the disciples are present.  But Jesus had more than the twelve with Him on many occasions, and likely this one as well.  They were headed to Jerusalem at the time of a major national feast.  It only makes sense that there would be others headed to the same place.  Although some Jews had turned away from Jesus in the past, others surely took their place as time went on.  In any case, those who went with Jesus experienced a mixture of emotions.  On the one hand, some were “amazed” at the resoluteness of Jesus.  Jesus had repeatedly spoken of His sufferings, and to watch Him set His face like flint would have surely left anyone awestruck.  On the other hand, others were “afraid.”  Why exactly, we’re not told.  Did they fear what would happen to Jesus?  Did they fear what would happen to those who followed Him?  Did they expect a physical military battle with the Romans as the Jewish Messiah came into town?  Any one of those things might have caused them to fear.
    • It’s easy to be amazed at the work and plan of God, but we need not fear it.  God is God, and God is always in control.  Just as God was always sovereign even over the sufferings of His Son, God is still sovereign over any trial that we might face.  With our loving Heavenly Father on His throne, we as His children have no need to fear.
    • If we are amazed, let us be sure it is for the right reason.  As long as the disciples were looking at the plan of God, amazement would be completely understandable.  However, considering the following scene with James & John, it seems likely that they had something else in mind.  They seemed to be looking at their own agenda, and perhaps the glory that they thought they could expect.  If they were amazed at that, then they had missed the point entirely.
  • In case any were doubting what Jesus was about to endure – in case some were still expecting the time in Jerusalem to be a walk in the park – in case some thought that perhaps Jesus might even change His mind – at this point, Jesus pulls the 12 aside from the rest and gives a third major prophecy of “the things that would happen to Him.”  Jesus leaves nothing to question here.  If the disciples are later surprised at the time that Jesus is arrested, it certainly cannot be said that Jesus hadn’t warned them.  He did…in abundance!

33 “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be betrayed to the chief priests and to the scribes; and they will condemn Him to death and deliver Him to the Gentiles; 34 and they will mock Him, and scourge Him, and spit on Him, and kill Him. And the third day He will rise again.”

  • This is the most detailed out of any of the Jesus’ prophecies regarding His sufferings.  The first instance had been in Caesarea Philippi, after Peter (on behalf of all the disciples) confessed Jesus to be the Christ, the Son of the Living God.  At that time, Jesus taught the bare bones basics: Mark 8:31, "And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again." []  After leaving there, going to the Mount of Transfiguration, and eventually coming back into Galilee (secretly, at the first), Jesus taught the same thing again: Mark 9:31, "For He taught His disciples and said to them, “The Son of Man is being betrayed into the hands of men, and they will kill Him. And after He is killed, He will rise the third day.”" []  The basic elements are the same, though the 2nd prophecy introduces the idea of Jesus’ betrayal by Judas.  The general prophecy of His suffering had become very personal to the disciples themselves, being that only someone who is a friend is capable of betrayal.  Yet this final prophecy is far more detailed than anything that had come before.  Jesus not only knew the fact of what would happen to Him, but He knew the specifics of all that He would endure.
  • There are many elements here:
    • The Son of Man”: Remember that this is a reference to Jesus’ deity.  Daniel 7:13-14 references a vision of the Son of Man coming in the glory of God near to the throne of God, and being given everlasting dominion over all of the earth as God.  This is who Daniel saw as the Messiah as the King, but much more than an earthly king – a heavenly king who has all the glory of God.  THIS Son of Man (Jesus) is who will endure of all of the sufferings about to be listed.
    • will be betrayed”: He will be turned over by a friend.  Again, an outward enemy cannot betray; he just works as he has always worked.  It takes someone close to betray you, and that is what would happen to the Son of Man.  If there were anyone we would think would never be betrayed, it would be the Son of Man – yet that is exactly what would happen.
    • to the chief priests and to the scribes” – i.e., to the Jewish leadership.  Think about that for a moment: the Jewish King is to be betrayed into the hands of those who ought to have bowed down to Him in allegiance and worship.  IOW, this is not merely an act of persecution (which would be bad enough); this is an act of treason.  The priests and scribes basically mutiny against their God and King, refusing to acknowledge who Jesus had repeatedly shown Himself to be.
    • condemn Him to death”: Going beyond mere rejection, the treason of the priests and elders go to the logical conclusion.  The Jewish leadership would have the gall to put their God and King on trial, and declare Him worthy of death.
    • deliver Him to the Gentiles”: This is one of the new elements of the prophecy.  Prior to this point, Jesus’ suffering has all been listed at the hand of the Jews – now He says that the Jewish Messiah will be handed over to the Gentiles.  This would have been inconceivable to the Jewish mindset.  Imagine David or Solomon delivered into the hands of the Philistines for them to do as they pleased.  Multiply that to the infinite degree, and that’s the idea of the Son of Man (the Messiah) being turned over to the Gentiles.  Surely these were some of the most shocking words uttered by Jesus that day.
    • Humiliated – “mock Him…spit on Him”.  The King of kings would suffer disgrace unspeakable.  Who would dare spit in the face of God?  Who would have the gall to insult the Son of Man to His face?  Yet that is what would happen. 
    • Tortured – “scourge Him”.  The scourging alludes to the crucifixion, since the two went hand-in-hand, but it serves to underscore the awfulness of it all.  Scourging was a punishment in itself, one that was known to kill people alone.  That the Creator of the Universe would willingly submit Himself to this is beyond comprehension.  This is what He would do for you & me.
    • Killed: There would be no salvation for the Messiah that day.  Unlike many movies where there’s an almost magical deliverance out of some great trial, the suffering of the Son of Man would actually end in death.  No angel would descend from heaven to take Him off the cross – no lightning would strike those who drove the nails through Jesus’ hands and feet.  He would literally die upon that cross that day, and His lifeless body would be taken down to be buried.
    • By all other respects, that’s where the prophecy should end…but it doesn’t.  “And the third day He will rise again.”  Resurrection!  There would not be a miracle taking Jesus down from the cross, but there certainly would be one in defeating death.  The Son of Man shows Himself to be the Son of Man through the ultimate demonstration of His power: resurrection from the grave!
  • There is a huge buildup to His death, but only the briefest mention of His resurrection – something that is reflected in the gospel narrative itself, as Mark’s account of the resurrection is tiny in comparison to the trial, suffering, and crucifixion of Jesus.  Why?  Perhaps it’s because the news of the resurrection is so good, that the mere existence of the fact overshadows everything else.  Like a diamond ring placed within a black jewelry box, the news of it shines so brightly that it’s all you can see, no matter that it is 1/10th the size of the darkness that surrounds it.  For Jesus, there is much suffering, but there is greater victory.  As awful as all of the betrayal, torture, and death is, all of it is undone in a moment by the resurrection!  Without the resurrection, Jesus would have been able to offer nothing but hopelessness.  But with the resurrection, Jesus could speak of so much more!  The Son of Man would not only experience sorrow and pain (the opposite of what the disciples expected for Him); He would experience power and victory unlike anything yet seen upon the earth!

35 Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to Him, saying, “Teacher, we want You to do for us whatever we ask.”

  • Try to imagine the mood after Jesus’ latest prophecy.  Those following Jesus had already been amazed and astounded before Jesus spoke.  Surely His words didn’t do much to change that…if anything, it would have increased!  Luke tells us that the disciples still did not understand what Jesus had told them.  It had been three times by this point, but it seems that this was such a difficult truth that they were unwilling to believe it.  It’s in light of all this that “James and John, the sons of Zebedee” come to Jesus with their request.  We don’t know how soon they asked – it could have been in the next couple of minutes, or the next couple of days.  But there is no doubt there is a massive contrast here – a massive disconnect.  Jesus had just taught of His impending suffering and death, and James and John act like they hadn’t heard a thing.  All they were fixated upon was what they selfishly wanted.  If anything, they understood this much: time was short before things were going to change in Jerusalem (though they obviously expected a much different change) – they had to ask Jesus now, before it was too late (or before anyone else asked Him the same thing).
  • The actual request comes in the next verse, but notice how this all begins: by asking for a blank check.  “Teacher, we want You to do for us whatever we ask.”  Really?!  There’s something to be said for us being bold in our prayers as we come before God, but boldness ought not cross over to arrogance, as it happened here.  Who are they to ask for a blank check from God?  When Abraham pleaded with God to spare anyone in the city of Sodom who might be righteous, Abraham addressed God in the humblest of terms, saying “I who am but dust and ashes have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord…” (Gen 18:27).  Other people who had revelations of the Lord in past generations had fallen upon their faces, fearing the consequences.  Even in the case of Solomon, to whom God HAD offered a blank check, didn’t ask for one.  Instead in his humility, Solomon asked for wisdom (which sadly, he did not apply towards the end of his life).  Yet these apostles did.  They had been given a greater revelation of God than any who had come before them.  They had sat under the daily teaching of Jesus for years.  They lived with Jesus and slept next to Him.  They had an incredibly close relationship with the Son of God, that others in the past could have only dreamt of.  And apparently, they started to take it for granted.  They started to think less of the glory of Jesus, and more of how the glory of Jesus could benefit them.

36 And He said to them, “What do you want Me to do for you?” 37 They said to Him, “Grant us that we may sit, one on Your right hand and the other on Your left, in Your glory.”

  • Matthew tells us that it was the mother of James and John that actually came making the request – no doubt it was done at the behest of the two brothers.  Perhaps they thought that Jesus would have a tougher time saying no to their mother (who was perhaps related to Jesus).  In any case, they are attempting to leverage for influence.  Culturally speaking, to sit on either side next to a ruler was to sit in the positions of greatest power next to him.  The closer someone sat next to a king, the more authority that person was invested with by the king.  James and John already had a closer relationship with Jesus than most of the apostles – on several occasions it was just the two of them and Peter that went with the Lord.  Now they’re asking for more (no doubt to the surprise of Peter!).  They desired glory and exaltation, even above the rest of the disciples with whom they had spent so much time.
  • Now put this all together with Jesus’ previous statement.  Jesus had said how He would suffer and die.  James and John ask, “Where are our thrones?”  Of course Jesus would rise from the grave, eventually sit on His throne, and the twelve disciples will sit next to Him in the kingdom (Lk 22:30).  The theology of all of that is very accurate.  It’s their focus upon it that it totally misplaced.  They are looking at the thrones for themselves; not at what Jesus would endure in order for them to even receive those thrones in the first place.  Jesus had spoken of His service; the brothers were fixated upon their own glory.
    • We will receive glory in heaven, but our heavenly glory is not about us; it’s about Jesus.

38 But Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you ask. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?”

  • Keep in mind that Jesus wasn’t really asking the question for an answer (which James and John miss).  This is a rhetorical question.  The brothers didn’t have a clue what it was they were asking.  They didn’t understand what was involved.  Yes, the kingdom would be glorious, and the hope of being in that kingdom witnessing the glory of God is something that helps us endure all kinds of trials in this life.  But that kingdom comes at a cost.  Prior to the glory would come suffering.  That’s what the references of the cup & baptism are all about.  Jesus is not speaking of a literal cup, nor of literal water baptism.  When OT prophets spoke of the cup of the Lord, most often it was in reference to the cup of God’s wrath, or the cup of the suffering that the people would endure.  Jesus would use the same idea when He prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane that God would take the cup away from Him.  “Baptism” is simply immersion.  Jesus would be immersed into suffering and death, covered over by it, just as people would do in their dedication to God.  Jesus’ question to James & John is really this: “Are you able to suffer the wrath of God like I’m about to do?” 

39 They said to Him, “We are able.” So Jesus said to them, “You will indeed drink the cup that I drink, and with the baptism I am baptized with you will be baptized; 40 but to sit on My right hand and on My left is not Mine to give, but it is for those for whom it is prepared.”

  • They still didn’t have a clue what Jesus was saying.  Some have thought that they imagined Jesus was going into battle, and they were saying that they were willing to go to the front lines with Him and lay down their lives.  They probably weren’t thinking that far ahead.  Like the rest of us, they put far too much trust in their own strength, and far too little emphasis on what Jesus was actually telling them.  Of course they would not be able to drink the cup of the wrath of God!  No one could, but Jesus!  Jesus did not merely hang on that cross like hundreds (if not thousands) of other people had hung on crosses.  As awful as it was, the cross was not the worst part of Jesus’ suffering.  The worst part was drinking down the wrath of God.  And that’s something that only Jesus could do.
  • That said, the brothers would go through similar sufferings as Jesus.  There’s no doubt about that.  Historically, James was one of the first martyrs of the early church, and the first apostle to die (apart from Judas).  John seems to have been the last apostle to die, but he seems to have been tortured by being dipped in boiling oil (a hideous type of baptism).  They did suffer in terrible ways, just as Jesus knew that they would.  They would be identified with Jesus in His suffering AND His glory, and that was Jesus’ point all along.
    • Symbolically, all Christians identify with Jesus’ suffering when we partake of the Lord’s Supper and baptism.  The cup we drink represents the blood of Christ, poured out for the remission of our sins.  He suffered so that we could be forgiven, and thus we partake.  In baptism, we are laid into the water just as Jesus was laid into the tomb – a specific picture of His death (and of His resurrection).  This is something all Christians do.
    • Yet it’s not just symbolism.  Being a disciple of Christ ensures that we will walk in the footsteps of Christ, and that involves suffering.  Not everyone suffers to the same extent – some Christians endure vastly more than others.  Some Christians around the world languish in prison – some are physically tortured – some have their family members killed before their eyes.  Others have a bit of an easier time in comparison, though a person’s trials are never easy when he/she is in the midst of them.  Yet this is expected for believers in Christ.  This is part of what it means to pick up our cross and follow Jesus.  This is part of what it means to leave house & brothers & sisters & endure persecutions for the sake of the gospel.  This is what it means to be a disciple.
  • Jesus affirms that they will suffer, but would the disciples experience glory?  Yes!  There would indeed be thrones upon which they would sit.  They would be with King Jesus for all of eternity, and have places of position and authority next to Him.  No doubt there is a glorious promise that awaited them in the kingdom.  (The reality of suffering doesn’t take away from any of that, though it certainly keeps it in the proper perspective.)  Jesus could promise them their place in the kingdom, but He does not promise them their specific position.  That was something that had been determined long ago according to the counsel of God, and it wouldn’t be changed on a whim – especially due to an arrogant request from the two brothers.  Matthew’s account shows that this is something that was given out by God the Father, rather than God the Son (Mt 20:23).  Jesus was not about to supplant the role of His Father (unlike the two brothers willing to step over the other 10 apostles).

41 And when the ten heard it, they began to be greatly displeased with James and John.

  • Greatly displeased” doesn’t really capture the moment here.  Other translations say “indignant,” and that’s more the idea.  The 10 couldn’t believe their ears as James and John made their request. Keep in mind that they weren’t spotless and innocent in all of this.  It wasn’t all that long ago that they had all been arguing among themselves who would be the greatest in the kingdom (9:33-34).  They had just had this same conversation with Jesus, and all of them had wanted the same thing as James and John.  Most likely, the other 10 disciples were upset that they hadn’t thought of asking Jesus for it first, and that James & John beat them to the punch.
  • Christians, like all humans, can be funny people.  On the one hand, Jesus is steadfastly resolute and serious about the trials He is about to face – while on the other hand, His closest disciples are bickering like children about the future Jesus is about to purchase for them.  We can get so focused upon ourselves, and we miss the broader picture.  We look for the things that WE want and WE desire, rather than how God might glorify Himself through our lives.  And then (like the disciples), we take it out on one another – somehow trying to make ourselves look better than all the rest.  We want the attention, and we want the glory.  Know this: It’s not about us.  It’s not about ME.  May God help us get our focus off of ourselves, so that we might seek His glory as we serve Him instead of serving our own selfish desires.

42 But Jesus called them to Himself and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers over the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them.

  • Jesus had been heading towards Jerusalem, but it was obvious that the disciples needed a time-out.  He calls them over to Himself and gives them a reality-check. Basically says, “Don’t you know what you’re doing?  You’re acting like the Gentiles.”  Tough comparison for the 12 Jewish disciples!  It was the Gentiles who lorded their positions over one another – who bragged about their accomplishments and tried to get others to give them glory and credit and fame.  That’s what the pagans did; that’s not what Jesus’ disciples ought to do.
  • Ever find yourself acting like a pagan?  Sometimes we think of that in terms of more obvious sins, such as the times we might have an outburst of wrath, or getting drunk, or engaging in lust.  But it’s more than that…we can act like a pagan just in terms of selfishness and self-promotion.  When believers in Christ start rejoicing in their positions of authority, they’re acting like pagans.  When those in ministry start holding up their titles and start calling attention to themselves, they’re acting like non-believers.  When individual Christians try to make themselves look better or more spiritual than other Christians around them, then they are acting no different than a non-believer.  All of that is based in pride – it’s based in selfishness.  And it has no place in the life of a Christian.
    • Does that mean that God does not grant authority?  Of course not.  God is a God of order, not of confusion, and He has given out positions of authority.  There is to be an order in a Christian home between children and parents, and between spouses.  There is an order in the local church as we submit to one another and to the elders.  There is an order even in the Trinity itself as Jesus submits to the headship of God the Father.  But that authority is never to be lorded over another.  Does the Father brag of His hierarchy over the Son?  Heaven forbid!  The relationship between them is absolutely perfect & loving.  There is so much unity among the Godhead than unless the Bible told us of an order, we might have difficulty knowing one existed.  That’s the way it ought to be between us.
  • So how are Christians supposed to act with one another?  The same way that Jesus has told them to act all along: as servants.  See vs. 43…

43 Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant. 44 And whoever of you desires to be first shall be slave of all.

  • This is the same thing that Jesus has told them on many occasions.  Back when they were having this conversation the first time: Mark 9:35, "And He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, “If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.”" [] A few days prior when Jesus spoke of what people would receive in the kingdom: Mark 10:31, "(31) But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”" []  And now this.  (One would think Jesus is trying to make a point! J)  It’s not about being first – it’s not about seeking greatness.  Yes, greatness and glory is promised to those who follow Christ, but if that is why you follow Him, then you’re missing the point.  If someone is seeking fame and fortune, then they aren’t truly seeking Jesus.  If someone is looking for people to command, then they aren’t looking for people to serve.  Jesus’ disciples are called to be servants.  Jesus’ disciples are called to be slaves.  A slave doesn’t lift up himself and seek his own glory; that is something reserved for his master to do for him.  His master is the one to come along and say, “Well done, good and faithful servant – enter into the joy of your Lord.”  THAT is the commendation we are to seek, rather than the applause and fame of men.  What does it matter if other people give us glory, when the glory they give us has no eternal value?  We might have our egos stroked for a moment, but then it’s all over.  But the glory that God gives us?  That lasts forever.

45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

  • Jesus is our great example in service and slavery.  The greatest of all men in all history willingly lowered Himself to serve all peoples everywhere.  The Lord God Himself gave His life as a ransom price as a slave to purchase our freedom.  The disciples were seeking to secure their own glory without any thought of others; Jesus denied Himself entirely in order that their future might be secured.  The disciples were acting as their own lord, while the true Lord was acting as their servant.  Which was greater?  Jesus – and infinitely so!  The One who had every right to demand obedient service demanded nothing.  Instead, He came to serve.  And in doing so, He makes it possible for us to know Him, and share in His glory for all eternity.  That’s not something for us to brag about; that’s something to emulate.  If the greatest of all became the lowest of all, how can we seek our own greatness?  We need to serve as our Master served, seeking not ourselves but the glory of God.
  • BTW – “ransom for many” specifically speaks of a substitution.  Literally, the Greek could be translated, “ransom against many,” meaning that Jesus’ life was paid against yours and mine.  His life went for your life.  His blood went for your blood.  In His service, Jesus took your place – and every promise we have in God is because of that.

Conclusion:
So it all ends the same way it had begun.  Jesus had spoken of the Son of Man’s suffering, in service to the world.  It was interrupted by the disciples’ carnal desire for glory.  Jesus has to correct their idea of what glory entails, and points them again to the suffering of the Son of Man as He becomes a ransom for us.  The Lord of all the universe came to act the part of a slave.  As a result, we have been set free – not to glory in ourselves, but to serve as our Master served.  Those who follow Jesus as disciples aren’t to lift up ourselves; we’re to lift up our Lord by loving as He loved and serving as a slave of God.

Beloved, beware selfish ambition!  It can so easily creep into a church, and among us generally as believers.  We start to look upon the things that we can gain, and the authority that we have been given, and we start to get into trouble.  That’s when it becomes about us, and not about Jesus.  That’s the point that pastors start abusing their power.  That’s the point that Christians start acting like hypocrites & fulfilling every stereotype of the “holier-than-thou” Christianity.  And that’s not what Christianity is about in the slightest.

Yes, we will receive a glorious inheritance, but that inheritance has come at the highest of costs: the blood of the Son of Man on our behalf.  May we hold on to that with all of the trembling holiness that it deserves!  May we never lose sight of what Jesus has done for us, and let it so impact us that we cannot help but serve others as we ourselves have been served.  That we would not seek our own, but that we would seek the glory of God, and for all the world to experience the same ransom price that has been paid for us.  The Son of God served as a slave in order that you might be free from death; may we serve God by helping others know the same freedom.

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