Extract taken from “The Master The Wise & The Lazy” by Pastor Bayo Adeyemi
Chapter 4 To Be The Greatest
Luke 22:24 – 27
And there was also a strife among them, which of them should be accounted the greatest. And he said unto them, The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and they that exercise authority upon them are called benefactors. But ye shall not be so: but he that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve. For whether is greater, he that sitteth at meat, or he that serveth? is not he that sitteth at meat? but I am among you as he that serveth.
We live in a world where aspirations are set at nothing less than greatness. We all want to be great but not all want to be servants first. When I was a student, we were given responsibilities which we accounted for daily. Students today see no need for responsibilities and see studying as the only way to success. This is true to some extent but we must remember that greatness comes with responsibilities which revolve around serving others.
Jesus told His disciples about the need for them to be servants if they want to be great. A dictionary definition of servant is a person employed by another, especially to perform domestic duties; a person in the service of another, a person employed by the government: a public servant. In the kingdom of God, we are expected to serve one another, render help to those in need and be accountable to a leader or leaders who may serve as pastors, teachers and mentors.
He that receiveth a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward; and he that receiveth a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward.
The Contemporary English Version of the same verse explains it as ‘anyone who welcomes a prophet, just because that person is a prophet, will be given the same reward as a prophet. Anyone who welcomes a good person, just because that person is good, will be given the same reward as a good person. And anyone who gives one of my most humble followers a cup of cool water, just because that person is my follower, will surely be rewarded.’ If for instance you are called to be a pastor, I think it is better you serve under those who are already pastors. Serve under those with great record of service where possible in order to receive a pastor’s reward. The reward described here is not just in Heaven but here on Earth as well.
Moses and Joshua
Joshua served Moses with total obedience. He received instructions from Moses. He was referred to as Moses’ minister; other versions called him Moses’ assistant.
And the LORD said unto Moses, Come up to me into the mount, and be there: and I will give thee tables of stone, and a law, and commandments which I have written; that thou mayest teach them. And Moses rose up, and his minister Joshua: and Moses went up into the mount of God.
He served Moses as if he was directly serving the Lord and every instruction was followed as instructed by Moses. So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and fought with Amalek: and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill (Exodus 17:10). Here we see the act of prompt obedience on Joshua’s part and the willingness to support his master in fighting and defeating the Amalekites. He was a good student of Moses from his youth and was referred to as one of the young men of Moses.
And there ran a young man, and told Moses, and said, Eldad and Medad do prophesy in the camp.
And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of Moses, one of his young men, answered and said, My lord Moses, forbid them.
It is likely that Moses had an army of young soldiers who were given duties and promptly reported to him. I am of the opinion that you cannot be served if you are not willing to serve others. You cannot be promoted to a position of leadership if you are not willing to be under leadership. When Moses died, God saw Joshua capable enough to be the next leader of Israel. He was well mentored by Moses and God made him a leader to mentor others just like his master Moses. There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee (Joshua 1:5). Please note the reference to Moses “as I was with Moses” meaning the way God blessed Moses is the same way He was going to bless Joshua as a result of his faithfulness towards Moses.