What Jesus Did! 'Loving the Limelight' — Mark 12:38-39

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Jesus continued teaching. Jesus said, "Be careful of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around wearing clothes that look important. And they love for people to show respect to them in the market places. They love to get the most important seats in the synagogues. And they love to get the most important seats at the feasts."
— Mark 12:38-39
Illustration of Mark 12:38-39 — "Be careful of the teachers of the law."

Key Thought

Being a teacher of the Bible and Christian living is not about prestige, position, or applause. Nearly every great teacher of God has had to endure ridicule, rejection, and possibly even suffering at one time or another. However, weaker souls are lured into a rotten mode of ministry because they desire the attention, attire, and adulation. This is not God's plan for a leader. This is not God's will for a faithful servant. In fact, these folks are to be avoided and their example is to be rejected. Those who follow Jesus are not about being "showy," but about being servants.

Today's Prayer

Father, make my soul blanch at the thought of egotistically seizing the limelight for myself and parading around like I'm something important. Make me into a useful servant in your Kingdom who cares more about helping the broken than I do about being recognized. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Today's Verses in Context

Jesus was teaching in the temple area. Jesus asked, "Why do the teachers of the law say that the Christ is the son of David ? With the help of the Holy Spirit, David himself says: 'The Lord (God) said to my Lord (Christ): Sit by me at my right side, and I will put your enemies under your control. ' David himself calls the Christ 'Lord.' So how can the Christ be David's son?" Many people listened to Jesus and were very pleased. Jesus continued teaching. Jesus said, "Be careful of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around wearing clothes that look important. And they love for people to show respect to them in the market places. They love to get the most important seats in the synagogues. And they love to get the most important seats at the feasts. They are mean to widows and steal their homes. Then they try to make themselves look good by saying long prayers. God will punish them very much." Jesus sat near the temple money box where people put their gifts. He watched the people put money in the box. Many rich people gave much money. Then a poor widow came and gave two very small copper coins. These coins were not even worth a penny. Jesus called his followers to him. Jesus said, "I tell you the truth. This poor widow gave only two small coins. But she really gave more than all the rich people. Those people have plenty; they gave only what they did not need. This woman is very poor. But she gave all she had. And she needed that money to help her live."

Mark 12:35-44

Related Scripture Readings

Stay away from the evil things a young person wants to do. Try very hard to live right and to have faith, love, and peace. Do these things together with those people who have pure hearts and trust in the Lord. Stay away from foolish and stupid arguments. You know that those arguments grow into bigger arguments. A servant of the Lord must not argue! He must be kind to every person. A servant of the Lord must be a good teacher. He must be patient. The Lord's servant must gently teach those people that don't agree with him. Maybe God will let those people change their hearts so that they can accept the truth. The devil has trapped those people and makes them do what he wants. But maybe they can wake up {and see that the devil is using them} and free themselves from the devil's trap.

2 Timothy 2:22-26

Before God and Jesus Christ I give you a command. Christ Jesus is the One who will judge the people who are living and the people who have died. Jesus has a kingdom, and he is coming again. So I give you this command: Tell people God's message. Be ready at all times. Tell people the things they need to do, tell them when they are wrong, and encourage them. Do these things with great patience and careful teaching. The time will come when people will not listen to the true teaching. But people will find more and more teachers that please them. People will find teachers that say the things those people want to hear. People will stop listening to the truth. They will begin to follow the teaching in false stories. But you should control yourself at all times. When troubles come, accept those troubles. Do the work of telling the Good News. Do all the duties of a servant of God. My life is being given as an offering for God. The time has come for me to leave this life here.

2 Timothy 4:1-6

Then Jesus spoke to the people and to his followers. Jesus said, "The teachers of the law and the Pharisees have the authority (power) to tell you what the law of Moses says. So you should obey the things they say. You should do all the things they tell you to do. But their lives are not good examples for you to follow. They tell you to do things, but they don't do those things themselves. They make strict rules that are hard for people to obey. They try to force other people to obey all those rules. But they themselves will not try to follow any of those rules. "The only reason they do good things is for other people to see them. They wear special boxes full of Scriptures. They make these boxes bigger and bigger. And they make their special prayer clothes very long {so that people will see them}.

Matthew 23:1-5

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.