Ron Lutz ~ Luke 22:21-30
21 But behold, the hand of him who betrays me is with me on the table. 22 For the Son of Man goes as it has been determined, but woe to that man by whom he is betrayed!” 23 And they began to question one another, which of them it could be who was going to do this. 24 A dispute also arose among them, as to which of them was to be regarded as the greatest. 25 And he said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those in authority over them are called benefactors. 26 But not so with you. Rather, let the greatest among you become as the youngest, and the leader as one who serves. 27 For who is the greater, one who reclines at table or one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at table? But I am among you as the one who serves. 28 “You are those who have stayed with me in my trials, 29 and I assign to you, as my Father assigned to me, a kingdom, 30 that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
“Usefulness in the world and church [means having] a humble readiness to do anything, and put our hands to any good work—a cheerful willingness to fill any post, however lowly, and discharge any office, however unpleasant, if we can only promote happiness and holiness.”
-J. C. Ryle
13 You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. 14 If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15 For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you.
24 Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. 25 Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.
By shying away from suffering, by rejecting God’s will, you may be short-circuiting both your knowledge of God and your growth. If you’ve told God that there are certain things he can’t do with your life and certain sufferings you won’t go through, you are cutting off the ministry of the Spirit to you. Power is being unleashed in history, and it only works through those who deny self, take up their cross, and follow Christ.
“For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake.”
“Where would I be had Jesus not come for me? The same place that millions of people in this country are without me. They can’t call on Jesus name if they haven’t heard of him, and they can’t hear about him unless we live here to tell them about him.”
Oh that the pleasure seeking men and women of the world could only taste and feel the real joy of those who know and love the true God—a heritage which the world cannot give to them, but which the poorest and humblest followers of Jesus inherit and enjoy!… Those who have tasted this highest joy, “The joy of the Lord,” will never again ask—Is life worth living?
-John G. Paton