Silly, Selfish Saints

Friday, February 3, 2017

And he [the Lord Jesus] came to Capernaum: and being in the house he asked them, What was it that ye disputed among yourselves by the way? But they held their peace: for by the way they had disputed among themselves, who should be the greatest (Mark 9:33,34 KJV).

Today’s Scripture shows us just how human the 12 Apostles were!

If Jesus was the all-knowing God in human flesh, why did He ask them the nature of their argument? It was to bring them to the point of accountability, to force them to see their frivolity. Having behaved childishly, they were ashamed and did not answer Jesus. They knew they had not been saved to serve or glorify themselves. Rather, they were God’s servants, and should have been submitting to Him and glorifying His Son. Actually, they had argued to the point where they eventually asked Jesus (Matthew 18:1), “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”

Luke 9:46-48 reports: “[46] Then there arose a reasoning among them, which of them should be greatest. [47] And Jesus, perceiving the thought of their heart, took a child, and set him by him, [48] And said unto them, Whosoever shall receive this child in my name receiveth me: and whosoever shall receive me receiveth him that sent me: for he that is least among you all, the same shall be great.” Later, the mother of James and John sons of Zebedee asked Jesus if they could be the two highest officials in His kingdom (Matthew 20:20-28—be sure to read Christ’s answer). She meant well—wanting what she thought was best for her sons—but God disapproved.

While Christ trained these men, He tolerated their sinfulness. They did not always pay attention to His preaching and miracles. Sometimes they argued about the dumbest things, insignificant distractions. We should not be hard on them. Why? We Christians today often fall into the same traps. Churches split over the stupidest issues, ministers argue about petty matters, and church members often try to outdo everyone to gain the most recognition. As the Apostles learned, Christian living is not prideful living. If we wanted to live for self, we should have stayed lost, for it does not make sense for saints to live in such sin, selfishness, and silliness!