Biblical Text: Mark 9:30-37
The text is probably a familiar one, at least it contains a couple of Jesus’ aphorisms that still have public purchase. “The one who wants to be first must be the servant of all” and “who ever welcomes the little child, welcomes me and the one who sent me.” These two sayings form Jesus’ teaching on ambition, although as I’m always saying the context of Jesus’ aphorisms is important. This sermon ponders the struggle of the divine and human ambition with Jesus himself. And this struggle (think about the Garden of Gethsemane) is the frame for a Christian teaching on ambition. Crucifying our ambition toward domination (“Who is the greatest”) and raising our ambition for service toward those whose only recompense is from God.