Thursday, September 10, 2009

True Greatness

J. P. Moreland describes most people in our American culture as "empty selves, drunk with seeking happiness and, as a result, individualistic, narcissistic, infantile people who approach others as objects that exist merely to make themselves happy.”

When Jesus' disciples were arguing about which one of them was the "greatest," he likened them to Gentile kings who exert power over their subjects for the sake of personal benefit. They used people to gain people's honor which, then, made them personally happy. Jesus tells us, "Don't you be like that!" (Luke 22:26) Instead, aim low. Serve others.

Moreland says, “The only true happiness comes from squandering ourselves for a purpose. As followers of Jesus, if we want to flourish as persons, we must give ourselves away for Christ’s sake.” (Moreland & Issler, The Lost Virtue of Happiness, 23, 32)

In the Kingdom of God there's no spiritual competing. In God's Kingdom everyone gets honored. And, we all get set free from the dark kingdom's oppressive "power-over-others" system. As Jesus-followers we must get this new way of living into our hearts, because Jesus "confers a kingdom on us," and his Kingdom is "not of this world."