24 And when the ten heard it, they were greatly displeased with the two brothers. 25 But Jesus called them to Himself and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them. 26 Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. 27 And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave— 28 just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”
And when the ten heard it, they were greatly displeased with the two brothers.
When the other disciples heard about the manipulative request of James and John, they were indignant. Jesus talked to them about the nature of authentic leadership (Mt 20:25-28).
But Jesus called them to Himself and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them [dictator leadership], and those who are great exercise authority over them.
Pagan rulers relish power. They relish greatness and dominance. They exercise dictatorship as their style of leadership.
Yet it shall not be so among you;
Jesus’ disciples did not operate on the power lust of leaders of their time but on the basis of service towards others.
but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant [minister].
People in ministry should not strive for positions of power. Ministry in the kingdom is a ministry of service.
And whoever desires to be first [chief] among you, let him be your slave [lower than a servant—abject slave]—
Ministry is self-sacrifice, not something for prestige and power lust. The right kind of greatness is serving others. Jesus evaluates success by the number of people a leader serves. The world evaluates success by the number of people a leader controls or the number of people on his staff.
just as [Jesus is the ultimate example of leadership] the Son of Man [it was the humanity of Christ that paid for our sins] did not come to be served [although He deserved it],
Jesus is the outstanding example of service to others (Php 2:7). We are to follow His example “just as” He served.
but to serve, and to give His life a ransom [payment] for many.”
Jesus gave Himself as a “ransom.” He gave Himself as a sacrifice for sin. A ransom is the price paid to redeem a slave. The price here is Christ’s own life. He paid with His life as a blood sacrifice.
The word “for” means in the place of. Jesus took our place. He took our hell that we might have His heaven. He personally paid for the penalty of our sins.
Jesus paid the ransom to the Father so that He would satisfy payment for sin.
The doctrine of propitiation is the doctrine that God is satisfied with our sin issue because Christ fully paid the price for sin. That ransom is valid only for those who rest in Jesus’ cross to forgive and pay for their sins.
1 Co 6:20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.
Ga 3:13 Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”).