The Master’s Master Principle


“But so shall it not be among you: but whosoever will be great among you, shall be your minister: And whosoever of you will be the chiefests shall be servant of all.”  (Mark 10:43-44)


1.          Christ’s view of His Kingdom was that of a community of members serving one another, mutual service.   Paul advocates the same idea,

“For, brethren, ye have teen called unto liberty; only use not literty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.   For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shall love thy neighbour as thysef” (Galatians 5:13-14)

and of course our loving service is to spread to the needy world around us. But in the life of the Church today, it is usually the few who serve the many.


2.         Being a servant to all is not popular.  Some seek; the glory and not the shame, the crown, but not the cross. to be masters,  not servants


3.         To be master to all, two leadership principles of permanent relevance must be clearly understood.  The first, there is sovereignty in spiritual leadership.

        “But to sit on my right hand and on my left hand is not mine to give; but it shall be given to them for whom it is prepared.” (Mark 10:40)


4.         Our emphasis would probably have been, “It is for those who have prepared themselves for it.  But, Jesus emphasized the fundamental difference in leadership principles, “It is not so among you. ” No theological training or leadership course will automatically confer spiritual leadership or qualify one for an effective ministry.  Jesus later shares,

“Ye have not chosen me. but I have chosen you and ordained you. that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of/he Father in my name, he may give it you. ” (John 15:16)

I am not here by selection of a man or the election of a group, but by the sovereign appointment of God!


5.        And the second principle, there is suffering in spiritual  leadership.

       “But Jesus said unto them, Ye know not what ye ask: can ye drink of the cup that I drink of and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?” (Mark 10:38)

Jesus, speaking to James and John, was too straightforward and honest to conceal the cost in the service of the Kingdom. To the Lord’s probing question they returned the glib answer, “we are able” thus betraying a lack of self-knowledge.  Jesus told them they would indeed drink the cup and experience the baptism.  They learned for an influential spiritual ministry there would be a steep price to pay and that it cannot be paid in a lump sum.  In the end it cost James his head and John finished his days in a concentration camp. There ministry was costly, it cost everything.


6.          The fundamental lessons that greatness comes by way of servanthood, and that first place in spiritual leadership is gained only by becoming everybody’s slave.  The thought of suffering and servanthood are linked, even as they were in the life of the Lord.  And is the servant greater than his Lord?


7.          The Spirit of Servanthood.   Primacy in leadership comes by way of primacy in servanthood. The principles of servanthood in the life of Jesus must be the patterns of ours.  (Isaiah 42:1-5)

A.  Dependance. Jesus voluntarily “emptied himself”

        “But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness ofmen: And being found in fash ion as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” (Philippians 2:7-8)

Surrendering His privileges and the independent exercise of His will. He voluntarily became dependent upon His Father.

B.   Approval.   Desiring the Father’s esteem instead of man’s.

       “I delight to do thy will 0 my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.” (Psalms 40:8)

C.    Modesty.   The ministry of God’s Servant would not be strident and flamboyant, but modest, meek, and humble.  In this day of blatant and arrogant self-­advertisement, that is a most desirable quality. God’s servant works so quietly and unobtrusively that many even doubt they existence.

D.   Empathy

“A bruised reed shall he not break and the smoking flar shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth.” (Isaiah 42:3) The Lord’s Servant would be sympathetic and understanding with the weak and erring.   Failing men and women are often crushed under the callous tread of their fellowmen; but not so with the Lord’s Servant. He is to specialize in mending bruised reeds and fanning the smoking wick into a flame again.

E.   Optimism.   God’s servant is undiscourageable. A pessimist never makes an inspiring leader. Hope and optimism are essential qualities for the servant of the Lord.

F.   Anointing.  The same anointing Jesus received is available to us.

               “How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: he went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil for God was with him.”  (Acts 10:38)

Until the Spirit descended upon Him at His baptism, Jesus created no stir in Nazareth. but then events of world-shaking importance began to happen.  Is the servant greater than his Lord?  Can we dispense with that which was the prime essential for the effectiveness of His ministry on earth?