Beware

When you look at tassels what do you think about? As a kid, the nice houses always had tassels hanging on the drapes, which seem to set the windows in a different class. Though window treatments were not the tassels of the Bible they still draw attention. In Bible times tassels with a blue chord stood out as a reminder and symbol of God. In fact, it was just that sort of tassel that the woman with the issue of blood was reaching out to touch the fringe of Jesus’ garment in Luke 8:43-48. 

Tassels were symbols to remind us of God’s presence in our lives and that He was always before us. You may need God’s presence today or one day this very week. When you feel alone He is Yehovah Shammah (Ezekiel 48:35), the God who is there in the midst. I want you to know that He is El Roi, the God who sees you, just as He saw Hagar in (Genesis 16:13).  What God desires from each of us is authentic faith that is well lived. Unlike what He finds from church leaders in Matthew 23:6-7~and they love the place of honor at feasts and the best seats in the synagogues and greetings in the marketplaces and being called rabbi by others. (ESV) 

I mean who doesn’t love being seated next to the restroom with the aroma vapors soothing the senses, or even to be seated next to the kitchen with a swinging door sharing wonderful visions? Moreover, as a kid my dad would always ask me, does it break your mouth to say, sir? For those in the crosshairs of Jesus, being called a rabbi, was to be called a teacher. Some would like nothing more than to be called Elder, deacon, minister. Christ Jesus said people love titles. I’m willing to bet that either you or someone you know has gotten a new title without a raise. Titles are fine, as long as they are not used to exalt human pride or create hierarchies in the faith

Listen to Jesus Matthew 23:8~But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all brothers. (ESV) Followers of Christ shouldn’t demand to be called by titles, such as rabbi, doctor, reverend. Pastors and Bible teachers are not to seek lofty titles, because we are all brothers and sisters in Christ. Matthew 23:9~And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. Jesus is using the word Father to refer to a spiritual father. In His day members of the Sanhedrin loved to be called father, indicating a superior spiritual position. 

Matthew 23:10~Neither be called instructors (καθηγητής kathēgētēs), for you have one instructor (καθηγητής kathēgētēs), the Christ. (ESV) (καθηγητής kathēgētēs) instructors, or masters, can also be rendered as teachers or leaders. Thus the title is forbidden to be used to exalt oneself above the people, as the scribes and Pharisees were doing. Faith in Jesus Christ was never meant to have a hierarchy. We are all in the faith, together, as one bride. Jesus explains the godliest honor is in serving. Matthew 23:11~The greatest among you shall be your servant (διάκονος diakonos). (ESV) Jesus says greatness or honor is found in serving.

(διάκονος diakonos) means waiter one who serves it gives us deacon. Thus, church leadership is about serving, and one cannot lead without serving and this greatest title in heaven, servant. In two days, Jesus will practice what He is teaching here in the Temple, by washing His disciples’ feet at the Last Supper (John 13:1-17). Matthew 23:12~Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted. (ESV) Grasp that on Judgment Day, the arrogant, selfish person who always wants places of honor or to be in the spotlight, will be humbled before Christ. In contrast, the humble, unselfish, servant person who tries to avoid being noticed, will be exalted.

Today, I want to ask you, what is your motivation for serving those around you. As parents we have obligations, I understand but what is stirring you to go beyond? Let it be Jesus, be the left-hand today that the right-hand knows nothing about.


Leave a Reply