Luke 14: 7 - 11
May 14 , 2017
We live in a world where people like recognition. I hate to admit it, but I have become one of those people who would love to tell you all about my grandson all the time. It is a good thing to be proud about your family and your blessings in life; however we must be careful not to talk only about ourselves. How should we conduct ourselves when it comes to recognition and honor? Jesus teaches about people who are always seeking fame and glory for themselves. Remember our purpose should always be to glorify the Lord!
1. Recognition of the Facts
Jesus always faced reality. He never ignored the facts or side stepped issues. A neurotic is one who refuses to face reality. A psychotic is one who cannot recognize reality nor function in real life. Jesus was certainly neither. He knew His audience. The Pharisees loved recognition. So do we! Something within every one of us desires attention. That is not all bad. Such an inward drive helps us work diligently to reach our goals, but in some cases it can become counter productive. If we use unhealthy ways of attaining that recognition, the harm is far greater than merely failing to achieve. The Pharisees were arrogant, egotistical, and pushy.
Have you ever been around egotistical pushy people?
How do you feel when dealing with this type of people?
How big is your ego?
Do you find yourself desiring recognition for what you do?
2. Warning of a Wrong Method
Jesus does not condemn ambitions as long as they are properly motivated. There is no condemnation toward people who work hard and achieve a place of prominence. Here Jesus is trying to teach people how to get where you want to go without be presumptuous or pushy. Never assume that you are so privileged that you can decide to enter a place reserved for others. You may find yourself embarrassed. Jesus said He noticed how the guests picked the places of honor. It is wrong to seek to exalt yourself over others. This is the attitude that says, “It is all about me and what I want.” Jesus taught that this self seeking attitude may help you in a pushy world but it is not pleasing to God.
Do most things revolve around what you want in life?
What is the alternative?
To be led by The Holy Spirit!
Is it easy to recognize those who recognize that life is all about Jesus?
What needs to change in your attitude and actions to make you more Christ like?
3. Suggestions for a Safe Course
The first suggestion is do not underestimate your importance. Every person needs self esteem based on self worth. Through Christ God has granted us great worth. We who are sinners saved by grace have become the children of God and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ. As we carefully evaluate our worth and actions we should always do so in light of who we are and who we belong to! Jesus teaches us to be humble and to love God with all that is within us and to love others in the same manner.
The second suggestion is do not overestimate your importance. Jesus warned us to be humble and He will exalt us in His time. Paul warned the early believers not to think more highly of themselves than they ought to. To ignore this advice leads to pride in our lives. The Bible says that pride goes before the fall. Pride is like a veil that clouds our vision, a chain, that binds us to superficiality, a spiritual cancer, that eats away at the possibility of love, contentment, and common sense. Pride also makes us think we are better than others. This is contrary to what Jesus taught about being a servant in order to become great in the eyes of God.
Do you know how special you are to God?
Can you encourage a person this week and build their self esteem?
Do you need to be honest with God about your pride?
If Jesus chose to be humble what does He expect of you?