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July 8, 2023

Dustan Stanley

Serving (or Being a Servant) is Greatness

We need to Redefine Greatness from the Bible

Greatness. It is built into the DNA of man to be great. It is a part of all of us to do well and to affect the world in a great way with our lives.

Is this going to be the greatest sermon you will ever hear?

I went on youtube to look into sermons on Greatness. Here are a few of the titles:

  • The Greatness of God – 127k
  • Pregnant with Greatness – 26k
  • The Foundation of Greatness – 8.5k
  • How to Prepare for Greatness – 1,7k
  • You were made for Greatness – 8.6k
  • The Shadow of Greatness – 1.1m
  • Discover your Greatness – 955k
  • How God prepares you for Greatness – 18k
  • Keys to Greatness – 16k
  • Birthing Greatness – 28k
  • The Guidelines to Greatness – 28k

Will this be a great sermon? Well what is a great sermon?

  • Is a great sermon one that makes the preacher seem bigger than life so that people awe at Him?
  • Is a great sermon eloquent and smooth and emotionally moving?
  • Is a great sermon perfectly theologically sound, regardless of how delivered?

What makes a great person?

  • Is it richness?
  • Is it power and authority over others?
  • Is it fame?
  • Is it to do great things? Accomplish great goals?
  • Is it to be remembered for generations?

What makes a great church?

  • Is a great church large?
  • Exciting?
  • Famous?

Alot of these things are cool, good even, but to most humans on the earth, many of those things are out of reach because of who you were born, where you were born, circumstances, etc.

Even when I mention that we are gonna have a sermon on Greatness, a bit of shame comes upon many of you.

So greatness has a dark side, an exclusive side, and an unobtainable side.

Jesus came and flipped the world on its head.

Acts 17:6 (ESV) 6 And when they could not find them, they dragged Jason and some of the brothers before the city authorities, shouting, “These men who have turned the world upside down have come here also,

Suddenly, the meek were blessed. And the persecuted. 

Then one day, James and John’s mother comes along….

Matthew 20:20-28 (ESV) 20 Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came up to him with her sons, and kneeling before him she asked him for something. 21 And he said to her, “What do you want?” She said to him, “Say that these two sons of mine are to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your kingdom.” 22 Jesus answered, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I am to drink?” They said to him, “We are able.” 23 He said to them, “You will drink my cup, but to sit at my right hand and at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father.” 24 And when the ten heard it, they were indignant at the two brothers. 25 But Jesus called them to him and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. 26 It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, 27 and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, 28 even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Jesus redefined greatness. 

SACRIFICE

HUMILITY

SERVICE

LOVE

Jesus does not judge greatness like we do. Who is the more important and correct judge?

Many who were leaders will be last.

Matthew 19:28-30 (ESV) 28 Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, in the new world, when the Son of Man will sit on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29 And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life. 30 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.

We are to be servants! The word minister MEANS servant!

Luke 22:25-27 (ESV) 25 And he said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those in authority over them are called benefactors. 26 But not so with you. Rather, let the greatest among you become as the youngest, and the leader as one who serves. 27 For who is the greater, one who reclines at table or one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at table? But I am among you as the one who serves.

Others are using service as a way to worldly promotion: this works,  it they fail to see that it is not a way to greatness, service is greatness itself. 

Matthew 18:1-4 (ESV) 1 At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” 2 And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them 3 and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

We are to be truly humble.

  • Humility is not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less.
  • Not false humble.
    • Difference? Do you really believe what you are saying?

Jesus set the example.

Mark 10:42-45 (ESV) And Jesus called them to him and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. 43 But it shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever would be first among you must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

“Being great in God’s kingdom is not about prestige or privilege. Rather, it involves responsibility and sacrifice. “

The world and religions definition of greatness is reserved for the few, Jesus expanded it to where anyone can be GREAT. It is within all of our reach. 

Today, I want you to know that anyone, anywhere, in any circumstance, can obtain greatness in God. 

The Great Sermon is the One that Serves God’s People to Be More Like Jesus.

The Greatest Church is one that serves its people and the community to bring glory to Jesus’ name,

The Greatest person is one who lives their life in such humble and serving ways that people are moved toward godliness by that example.

Redefine greatness in your Mind. You can be a doorkeeper at church and be great in God’s eyes!

You can be a mother who serves her family with all of her heart and be great.

We are not to be known for our gifts! We are not to be known for our music! Not our preaching. Not our video production.

We are to be known by our love. By our humility. By our service. 

John 13:34-35 (ESV) 34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.

That is what makes a great person in God’s eyes.

So, today, I invite you to greatness. Not as the world defines it, but as Jesus defines it.

Greatness is when a person, church, or business serves in such a truly humble and sacrificial way, that it makes people recognize the love of Jesus upon their life.

Anyone can do it.

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