John said to Jesus, "Teacher, we saw someone using your name to cast out demons, but we told him to stop because he wasn't in our group."
— Mark 9:38 NLT
Isn't it amazing how quickly we can split up into our cliques and begin arrogantly doing, as a group, what Jesus had just challenged his disciples not to do as individuals? He told them that the greatest must be a servant to all (Mark 9:30-37). We all want to picture ourselves as "insiders" in the Kingdom of God — those who are righteously superior, correct, rightfully included. When others appear to be doing God's good work, we feel threatened rather than delighted. How shallow, how petty, and how un-Jesus, such arrogance is! God forgive us and change us from our small and selfish ways.
Father in heaven, I love you. However, I have to admit that I frustrate myself with my own selfish and petty loyalties and pride, even though I hate those traits in others. I need your help, Father, to hate them in myself and remove them from my own heart. Please help me be more open, just as your Son was while on the earth. In Jesus' name. Amen.
Related Scripture Readings
- Romans 15:5-7
- James 3:17
- 1 Peter 5:14
About This Devotional
What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.
What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.