Tag Archives: Matthew 20

Matthew 20

20 Feb

Matthew 20:16 “So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”

At the point that you begin to say “that’s not fair” you have reached the moment that you begin to understand grace.
At the moment that you begin to offer people what they don’t deserve you have reached the moment you begin to live out grace.

When Israel was delivered from Egypt they were given what we call the Ten Commandments. But the commandments don’t begin with a “thou shalt” or “thou shalt not” but a reminder “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery (Exodus 20:2).” They begin with grace. While you were slaves, I set you free. When you could do nothing for yourself and when you had earned nothing for yourselves I set you free.

This grace narrative was to shape the way that they treated others:
Deuteronomy 6:21 When you harvest the grapes in your vineyard, do not go over the vines again. Leave what remains for the alien, the fatherless and the widow. 22 Remember that you were slaves in Egypt. That is why I command you to do this.”

They were to not go over there fields again and again but they could harvest once and then allow those in need to live off their crops. They could have argued. We planted. We watered. We protected the field from birds and other pests. They could have said “that it’s not fair!”

Kind of like Egypt?

Grace is the great reversal. It allows those who are last to be first. And it is a warning that those who cling to the narrative of having to be first that they will be last.


Matthew 20

21 Jan

Continuing to go through the book of Matthew looking at one chapter a day and offering a thought, question, or quote. Today it is Matthew 20:

Matthew 20:25 Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. 26Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 27and whoever wants to be first must be your slave— 28just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Brant Hanson distinguishes two different kinds of leaders: The LeaderMan vs. The Servant Leader

LeaderMan: Wants a platform on which to say something
Servant Leader: Has something to say
LeaderMan: You almost feel you know his family, because he’s your Leader
Servant Leader: You allow him to influence you, because you know his family
LeaderMan: Wants you to know he’s a Leader
Servant Leader: You’re not sure he knows he’s a leader
LeaderMan: Loves the idea of the Gospel, and the idea of The Church
Servant Leader: Loves God and the actual individual people God brings across his path
LeaderMan: Helps you find where God is leading you in his organization
Servant Leader: Helps you find where God is leading you
LeaderMan: Resents “sheep stealing”
Servant Leader: Doesn’t get the “stealing” part, since he doesn’t own anyone to begin with
LeaderMan: Wants the right people on the bus
Servant Leader: Wants to find the right bus for you, and sit next to you on it
LeaderMan: A visionary who knows what the future looks like
Servant Leader: Knows what your kitchen looks like
LeaderMan: If it’s worth doing, it worth doing with excellence
Servant Leader: Not exactly sure how to even calculate “worth doing”
LeaderMan: Impressed by success and successful people
Servant Leader: Impressed by faithfulness
LeaderMan: Reveals sins of his past
Servant Leader: Reveals sins of his present
LeaderMan: Gives you things to do
Servant Leader: Gives you freedom
LeaderMan: Leads because of official position
Servant Leader: Leads in spite of position
LeaderMan: Deep down, threatened by other Leaders
Servant Leader: Has nothing to lose