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Matthew Chapter Twenty


Matthew 20

We may remark that, when the Lord answers Peter, it was the consequence of having left all for Christ upon His call. The motive was Christ Himself: therefore He says, "Ye which have followed me." He speaks also of those who had done it for His name's sake. This was the motive. The reward is an encouragement, when, for His sake, we are already in the way. This is always the case when reward is spoken of in the New Testament. [1] He who was called at the eleventh hour was dependent on this call for his entrance into the work; and if, in his kindness, the master chose to give him as much as the others, they should have rejoiced at it. The first adhered to justice; they received that which was agreed upon; the last enjoyed the grace of his master. And it is to be remarked that they accept the principle of grace, of confidence in it. "Whatsoever is right I will give!" The great point in the parable is that-confidence in the grace of the master of the vineyard, and grace as the ground of their action. But who understood it? A Paul might come in late, God having then called him, and be a stronger testimony to grace than the labourers who had wrought from the dawning of the gospel day.

The Lord afterwards pursues the subject with His disciples. He goes up to Jerusalem, where the Messiah ought to have been received and crowned, to be rejected and put to death, but after that to rise again; and when the sons of Zebedee come and ask him for the two first places in the kingdom, He answers that He can lead them indeed to suffering; but as to the first places in His kingdom, He could not bestow them, except (according to the Father's counsels) on those for whom the Father had prepared them. Wondrous self-renunciation! It is for the Father, for us, that He works. He disposes of nothing. He can bestow on those who will follow Him a share in His sufferings: everything else shall be given according to the counsels of the Father. But what real glory for Christ and perfection in Him, and what a privilege for us to have this motive only, and to partake in the Lord's sufferings! and what a purification of our carnal hearts is here proposed to us, in making us act only for a suffering Christ, sharing His cross, and committing ourselves to God for recompense!

The Lord then takes occasion to explain the sentiments that become His followers, the perfection of which they had seen in Himself. In the world, authority was sought for; but the spirit of Christ was a spirit of service, leading to the choice of the lowest place, and to entire devotedness to others. Beautiful and perfect principles, the full bright perfection of which was displayed in Christ. The renunciation of all things, in order to depend confidingly on the grace of Him whom we serve, the consequent readiness to take the lowest place, and thus to be the servant of all-this should be the spirit of those who have part in the kingdom as now established by the rejected Lord. It is this that becomes His followers. [2]

With the end of verse 28 this portion of the Gospel terminates, and the closing scenes of the blessed Saviour's life begin. At verse 29 [3] begins His last presentation to Israel as the Son of David, the Lord, the true King of Israel, the Messiah. He begins His career in this respect at Jericho, the place where Joshua entered the land-the place on which the curse had so long rested. He opens the blind eyes of His people who believe in Him and receive Him as the Messiah, for such He truly was, although rejected. They salute Him as Son of David, and He answers their faith by opening their eyes. They follow Him-a figure of the true remnant of His people, who will wait for Him.


[1] Indeed, reward is in scripture always an encouragement to those who are in sorrow and suffering by having from higher motives entered into God's way. So Moses; so even Christ, whose motive in perfect love we know, yet for the joy set before Him endured the cross despising the shame. He was the Leader and Completer in the path of faith.

[2] Observe the way in which the sons of Zebedee and their mother come to seek the highest place, at the moment when the Lord was preparing unreservedly to take the very lowest. Alas! we see so much of the same spirit. The effect was to bring out how absolutely He had stripped Himself of everything. These are the principles of the heavenly kingdom: perfect self-renunciation, to be contented in thorough devotedness; this is the fruit of love that seeketh not her own-the yieldingness that flows from the absence of self-seeking; submission when despised; meekness and lowliness of heart. The spirit of service to others is that which love produces at the same time as the humility which is satisfied with this place. The Lord fulfilled this even unto death, giving His life as a ransom for many.

[3] The case of the blind man at Jericho is, in all the first three Gospels, the commencement of the final circumstances of Christ's life which led on to the cross, the general contents and teachings of each being closed. Hence He is addressed as Son of David, being the last presentation of Himself as such to them, God's testimony being given to Him as such.

── John DarbySynopsis of Matthew


Matthew 20

Chapter Contents

The parable of the labourers in the vineyard. (1-16) Jesus again foretells his sufferings. (17-19) The ambition of James and John. (20-28) Jesus gives sight to two blind men near Jericho. (29-34)

Commentary on Matthew 20:1-16

(Read Matthew 20:1-16)

The direct object of this parable seems to be, to show that though the Jews were first called into the vineyard, at length the gospel should be preached to the Gentiles, and they should be admitted to equal privileges and advantages with the Jews. The parable may also be applied more generally, and shows, 1. That God is debtor to no man. 2. That many who begin last, and promise little in religion, sometimes, by the blessing of God, arrive at a great deal of knowledge, grace, and usefulness. 3. That the recompense of reward will be given to the saints, but not according to the time of their conversion. It describes the state of the visible church, and explains the declaration that the last shall be first, and the first last, in its various references. Till we are hired into the service of God, we are standing all the day idle: a sinful state, though a state of drudgery to Satan, may be called a state of idleness. The market-place is the world, and from that we are called by the gospel. Come, come from this market-place. Work for God will not admit of trifling. A man may go idle to hell, but he that will go to heaven, must be diligent. The Roman penny was sevenpence halfpenny in our money, wages then enough for the day's support. This does not prove that the reward of our obedience to God is of works, or of debt; when we have done all, we are unprofitable servants; but it signifies that there is a reward set before us, yet let none, upon this presumption, put off repentance till they are old. Some were sent into the vineyard at the eleventh hour; but nobody had hired them before. The Gentiles came in at the eleventh hour; the gospel had not been before preached to them. Those that have had gospel offers made them at the third or sixth hour, and have refused them, will not have to say at the eleventh hour, as these had, No man has hired us. Therefore, not to discourage any, but to awaken all, be it remembered, that now is the accepted time. The riches of Divine grace are loudly murmured at, among proud Pharisees and nominal Christians. There is great proneness in us to think that we have too little, and others too much of the tokens of God's favour; and that we do too much, and others too little in the work of God. But if God gives grace to others, it is kindness to them, and no injustice to us. Carnal worldlings agree with God for their penny in this world; and choose their portion in this life. Obedient believers agree with God for their penny in the other world, and must remember they have so agreed. Didst not thou agree to take up with heaven as thy portion, thy all; wilt thou seek for happiness in the creature? God punishes none more than they deserve, and recompenses every service done for him; he therefore does no wrong to any, by showing extraordinary grace to some. See here the nature of envy. It is an evil eye, which is displeased at the good of others, and desires their hurt. It is a grief to ourselves, displeasing to God, and hurtful to our neighbours: it is a sin that has neither pleasure, profit, nor honour. Let us forego every proud claim, and seek for salvation as a free gift. Let us never envy or grudge, but rejoice and praise God for his mercy to others as well as to ourselves.

Commentary on Matthew 20:17-19

(Read Matthew 20:17-19)

Christ is more particular here in foretelling his sufferings than before. And here, as before, he adds the mention of his resurrection and his glory, to that of his death and sufferings, to encourage his disciples, and comfort them. A believing view of our once crucified and now glorified Redeemer, is good to humble a proud, self-justifying disposition. When we consider the need of the humiliation and sufferings of the Son of God, in order to the salvation of perishing sinners, surely we must be aware of the freeness and richness of Divine grace in our salvation.

Commentary on Matthew 20:20-28

(Read Matthew 20:20-28)

The sons of Zebedee abused what Christ said to comfort the disciples. Some cannot have comforts but they turn them to a wrong purpose. Pride is a sin that most easily besets us; it is sinful ambition to outdo others in pomp and grandeur. To put down the vanity and ambition of their request, Christ leads them to the thoughts of their sufferings. It is a bitter cup that is to be drunk of; a cup of trembling, but not the cup of the wicked. It is but a cup, it is but a draught, bitter perhaps, but soon emptied; it is a cup in the hand of a Father, John 18:11. Baptism is an ordinance by which we are joined to the Lord in covenant and communion; and so is suffering for Christ, Ezekiel 20:37; Isaiah 48:10. Baptism is an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace; and so is suffering for Christ, for unto us it is given, Philippians 1:29. But they knew not what Christ's cup was, nor what his baptism. Those are commonly most confident, who are least acquainted with the cross. Nothing makes more mischief among brethren, than desire of greatness. And we never find Christ's disciples quarrelling, but something of this was at the bottom of it. That man who labours most diligently, and suffers most patiently, seeking to do good to his brethren, and to promote the salvation of souls, most resembles Christ, and will be most honoured by him to all eternity. Our Lord speaks of his death in the terms applied to the sacrifices of old. It is a sacrifice for the sins of men, and is that true and substantial sacrifice, which those of the law faintly and imperfectly represented. It was a ransom for many, enough for all, working upon many; and, if for many, then the poor trembling soul may say, Why not for me?

Commentary on Matthew 20:29-34

(Read Matthew 20:29-34)

It is good for those under the same trial, or infirmity of body or mind, to join in prayer to God for relief, that they may quicken and encourage one another. There is mercy enough in Christ for all that ask. They were earnest in prayer. They cried out as men in earnest. Cold desires beg denials. They were humble in prayer, casting themselves upon, and referring themselves cheerfully to, the Mediator's mercy. They showed faith in prayer, by the title they gave to Christ. Surely it was by the Holy Ghost that they called Jesus, Lord. They persevered in prayer. When they were in pursuit of such mercy, it was no time for timidity or hesitation: they cried earnestly. Christ encouraged them. The wants and burdens of the body we are soon sensible of, and can readily relate. Oh that we did as feelingly complain of our spiritual maladies, especially our spiritual blindness! Many are spiritually blind, yet say they see. Jesus cured these blind men; and when they had received sight, they followed him. None follow Christ blindly. He first by his grace opens men's eyes, and so draws their hearts after him. These miracles are our call to Jesus; may we hear it, and make it our daily prayer to grow in grace and in the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

── Matthew HenryConcise Commentary on Matthew


Matthew 20

Verse 2

[2] And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard.

The Roman penny was about seven pence halfpenny. [About thirteen and three quarter cents, American.] This was then the usual price of a day's labour.

Verse 6

[6] And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle?

About the eleventh hour — That is, very late; long after the rest were called.

Verse 8

[8] So when even was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, Call the labourers, and give them their hire, beginning from the last unto the first.

In the evening — Of life; or of the world.

Verse 9

[9] And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny.

Who were hired about the eleventh hour — Either the Gentiles, who were called long after the Jews into the vineyard of the Church of Christ; or those in every age who did not hear, or at least understand the Gospel call, till their day of life was drawing to a period. Some circumstances of the parable seem best to suit the former, some the latter of these senses.

Verse 10

[10] But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a penny.

The first supposed they should have received more — Probably the first here may mean the Jews, who supposed they should always be preferred before the Gentiles.

Verse 12

[12] Saying, These last have wrought but one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of the day.

Thou hast made them equal to us — So St. Peter expressly, Acts 15:9. God-hath put no difference between us (Jews) and them, (Gentiles,) purifying their hearts by faith. And those who were equally holy here, whenever they were called, will be equally happy hereafter.

Verse 14

[14] Take that thine is, and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee.

It is my will to give to this last called among the heathens even as to the first called among the Jews: yea, and to the late converted publicans and sinners, even as to those who, were called long before.

Verse 15

[15] Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good?

Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with my own? — Yea, doubtless, to give either to Jew or Gentile a reward infinitely greater than he deserves. But can it be inferred from hence, that it is lawful, or possible, for the merciful Father of spirits to "Consign an unborn soul to hell? Or damn him from his mother's womb?" Is thine eye evil because I am good - Art thou envious, because I am gracious? Here is an evident reference to that malignant aspect, which is generally the attendant of a selfish and envious temper.

Verse 16

[16] So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen.

So the last shall be first, and the first last — Not only with regard to the Jews and Gentiles, but in a thousand other instances.

For many are called — All who hear the Gospel; but few chosen - Only those who obey it. Matthew 19:30; 22:14.

Verse 17

[17] And Jesus going up to Jerusalem took the twelve disciples apart in the way, and said unto them,

Mark 10:32; Luke 18:31.

Verse 20

[20] Then came to him the mother of Zebedee's children with her sons, worshipping him, and desiring a certain thing of him.

Then came to him the mother of Zebedee's children — Considering what he had been just speaking, was ever any thing more unreasonable? Perhaps Zebedee himself was dead, or was not a follower of Christ. Mark 10:35.

Verse 21

[21] And he said unto her, What wilt thou? She saith unto him, Grant that these my two sons may sit, the one on thy right hand, and the other on the left, in thy kingdom.

In thy kingdom — Still they expected a temporal kingdom.

Verse 22

[22] But Jesus answered and said, Ye know not what ye ask. Are ye able to drink of the cup that I shall drink of, and to be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with? They say unto him, We are able.

Ye know not what is implied in being advanced in my kingdom, and necessarily prerequired thereto. All who share in my kingdom must first share in my sufferings. Are you able and willing to do this? Both these expressions, The cup, the baptism, are to be understood of his sufferings and death. The like expressions are common among the Jews.

Verse 23

[23] And he saith unto them, Ye shall drink indeed of my cup, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with: but to sit on my right hand, and on my left, is not mine to give, but it shall be given to them for whom it is prepared of my Father.

But to sit on my right hand — Christ applies to the glories of heaven, what his disciples were so stupid as to understand of the glories of earth. But he does not deny that this is his to give. It is his to give in the strictest propriety, both as God, and as the Son of man. He only asserts, that he gives it to none but those for whom it is originally prepared; namely, those who endure to the end in the faith that worketh by love.

Verse 25

[25] But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them.

Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles lord it over them — And hence you imagine, the chief in my kingdom will do as they: but it will be quite otherwise.

Verse 26

[26] But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;

Your minister — That is, your servant. Matthew 23:11.

Verse 29

[29] And as they departed from Jericho, a great multitude followed him.

Mark 10:46; Luke 18:35.

Verse 30

[30] And, behold, two blind men sitting by the way side, when they heard that Jesus passed by, cried out, saying, Have mercy on us, O Lord, thou Son of David.

Behold two blind men cried out — St. Mark and St. Luke mention only one of them, blind Bartimeus. He was far the more eminent of the two, and, as it seems, spoke for both.

Verse 31

[31] And the multitude rebuked them, because they should hold their peace: but they cried the more, saying, Have mercy on us, O Lord, thou Son of David.

The multitude charged them to hold their peace — And so they will all who begin to cry after the Son of David. But let those who feel their need of him cry the more; otherwise they will come short of a cure.

── John WesleyExplanatory Notes on Matthew


Chapter 20. Blind Men Receive Sight

Many Are Called
Few Are Chosen

I. Parable of the Vineyard

  1. Go out to Hire Workers
  2. Receive Their Own Wages
  3. Out of Grace

II. Seek Spiritual High Positions

  1. The Right and Left of the Lord
  2. Drink the Lord's Cup
  3. Give Life as a Ransom

III. Two Blink Men Receive Sight

  1. Seize the Opportunity
  2. Disregard Hindrance
  3. Ask Directly
── Chih-Hsin ChangAn Outline of The New Testament
The Laborers In The Vineyard (Mt 20:1-16)
1. In our previous study in "The Parables Of Jesus"...
   a. We saw that "an unforgiving spirit" has no place in the hearts of
      those who would make up the kingdom of heaven
   b. Cf. "The Unmerciful Servant", Mt 18:21-35
2. Our next parable identifies another attitude of heart that has no 
   place in the kingdom...
   a. This parable is known as "The Laborers In The Vineyard"
   b. Found in Mt 20:1-16, let's begin with a careful reading of it
3. The meaning of this parable has challenged many expositors, and 
   explanations offered have been varied
[While admittedly difficult, I believe the main point can be determined
with a fair degree of certainty.  Especially if we begin by taking into
      1. Jesus had been approached by this man with a question 
         concerning eternal life
      2. In the course of their conversation, Jesus challenged the 
         young man to give up all and follow Him
      3. The man went away sorrowful, unable to accept the challenge
      1. Jesus used this opportunity to teach how difficult it is for
         the rich to enter the kingdom of heaven
      2. This causes the disciples to wonder who then could be saved?
      3. Jesus' response is that with God all things are possible
      1. Unlike the rich young man, Peter and the other disciples had
         accepted the challenge to give up all and follow Jesus - cf. 
         Mt 4:18-22
      2. So he asks:  "Therefore what shall we have?"
      3. It appears that Peter is wanting to know...
         a. If the rich can be saved (though barely, and with the help
            of God)...
         b. What more will those receive, who have given up all to 
            follow Christ?
      4. Peter's question could be viewed as coming from a commercial 
         or mercenary spirit...
         a. I.e., having some sort of personal profit as a chief aim
         b. I.e., motivated solely by a desire for personal gain
      5. Peter's motive may have been pure, in which case Jesus' 
         complete answer may have been designed to be a "pre-emptive 
         strike" against any improper motives
   D. THE REPLY GIVEN BY JESUS - Mt 19:28-30
      1. First, an assurance...
         a. Specifically, to the apostles - Mt 19:28
            1) In the "regeneration", they will be judging the twelve 
               tribes of Israel
            2) This promise could refer either to:
               a) Their role as apostles in the gospel age following 
                  Pentecost - cf. Mt 16:19
               b) A special role following the return of Christ when He
                  comes to judge the world - cf. Mt 25:31-ff
         b. Generally, to all disciples - Mt 19:29
            1) In this life, a "hundredfold" houses, brothers, sisters,
            2) In the age to come, "everlasting life" - cf. Mk 10:29-30
            3) I.e., those who give up all will receive more than 
               enough in return
      2. But then, a warning - Mt 19:30
         a. "But many who are first will be last, and the last first."
         b. A rather cryptic warning, one repeated again in Mt 20:16
[Since this warning both precedes and follows the parable we are 
studying, it is evident that the parable was told to explain the 
warning!  And since the warning was first given in response to Peter's
question, any explanation of the parable should be based upon the 
setting that preceded its telling.
With this in mind, let's proceed to consider...]
      1. Early in the morning, a landowner hires laborers to work for 
         an agreed upon wage - Mt 20:1-2
      2. Later, at different hours of the day, he finds more and hires
         them also, for a fair but unspecified wage - Mt 20:3-7
      3. At the end of the day, they are all paid equally, which 
         irritates those who had worked all day - Mt 20:8-12
      4. The landowner responds to the complainers...
         a. I treated you fairly, for you received according to our 
            agreement - Mt 20:13-14a
         b. I wish to pay the others the same - Mt 20:14b
            1) Do I have not the right? - Mt 20:15a
            2) Are you envious, because I am gracious? - Mt 20:15b
      5. Jesus concludes by repeating the warning - Mt 20:16 (some 
         manuscripts add another warning:  "For many are called, but 
         few chosen")
      1. Many and varied have been the interpretations; for example...
         a. The various bands of workers are the O.T. saints; those 
            called at the eleventh hour are the apostles
         b. The workers first called are the Jews, those called last 
            are the Gentiles
         c. The parable represents the whole gospel age up to Christ's
            return, and the workers are groups saved at various periods
         d. It refers to different periods of a person's life in which
            he may respond to the Lord: some responding early, others 
            late in life
      2. Since this parable is in response to Peter's question, I 
         a. That the first workers represent the apostles and others 
            like them
            1) Who are called by Christ through the gospel early in 
            2) And who therefore may labor long and hard in the 
               "vineyard" (i.e., the kingdom of God)
         b. The other workers represent those who are called by Christ
            via the gospel at various times
            1) Some of whom are called late in life
            2) Who do not have opportunity to do as much for the Lord
      3. In light of this interpretation, the main point of the parable
         a. What everyone receives will be more than "fair" ("Did you 
            not agree with me...?")
         b. No one has the right to question the "generosity" of the 
            Lord ("Is it not lawful for me to do what I wish with my 
            own things?")
         c. Those who may serve long and hard should not be "envious" 
            if others receive the same reward ("Is your eye evil 
            because I am good?")
         d. Therefore no one should serve the Lord with a commercial or
            mercenary spirit!
            1) The very danger Peter was close to falling into by the 
               question he raised!
            2) A danger to which we are all susceptible!
      4. Perhaps I should stress that this parable is NOT saying that
         those who purposely put off obeying Christ until the last 
         moment can be saved!
         a. If that were the point, the parable would have been worded
            1) Notice that those who responded at the late hour of the
               day had not been working "Because no one hired us" - Mt 
            2) They accepted the offer as soon as they heard it, though
               late in the day
            -- They were not people who turned down many opportunities
               to accept the offer to labor in the vineyard, only to 
               accept at the last hour!
         b. Whether one can be saved at the last moment after lifelong
            rejection of the gospel is another question
            1) One which only the Lord can rightfully answer
            2) However, notice what is said of those who remain in a 
               condition of rejecting the gospel:
               a) They judge themselves unworthy of everlasting life 
                  - cf. Ac 13:46
               b) They are storing up for themselves wrath in the day 
                  of wrath - cf. Ro 2:4-11
1. It is my understanding that the proper application of this parable 
   is this...
   a. When we are called by the gospel to obey Christ, we should 
      respond at once!
      1) For some, we may hear the invitation early in life
      2) Others may not come to know of the gospel until late in life
   b. As laborers in the vineyard (i.e., the kingdom), we should work 
      diligently in whatever time we may have left
      1) We may be blessed to offer a full life of service to the Lord
      2) Or we may only have a short time
   c. We should do whatever we can without a commercial or mercenary 
      spirit (e.g., "Do I get more because I gave more?")
2. With this parable, we learn more about those in the kingdom of
   a. Just as the parable of "The Unmerciful Servant" teaches us there
      is no place in the kingdom of heaven for "an unforgiving
   b. So the parable of "The Laborers In The Vineyard" teaches us there
      is no room in the kingdom of heaven for those with either "a
      mercenary spirit" or "an envious spirit"!
3. My fellow Christians, what is our attitude toward our service to 
   a. One of gratitude?
   b. Or one of commercialism?
   -- There is only one attitude that is acceptable!
4. For those who are not yet Christians...
   a. Why not let the gracious spirit of the "landowner" revealed in
      this parable encourage you to accept the grace of God in humble
      obedience to His gospel?
   b. Why not live out the rest of your life in grateful service to
Served By Greatness, Serve To Be Great (20:20-28)
1. What good mother does not desire the best for her children?
   a. The mother of James and John was no different
   b. She desired great things for her two sons - Mt 20:20-21
2. Yet she was not aware of the significance of what she was asking 
   a. Serving in His kingdom would require great sacrifice and 
      suffering - Mt 20:22-23
   b. Her request could only be granted by the Father - Mt 20:23
3. This request in behalf of James and John displeased the other 
   apostles - Mt 20:24
   a. Upon which Jesus used this opportunity to teach an important
      lesson - Mt 20:25-28
   b. I.e., to be great in the kingdom one must serve, even as the Son
      of Man came to serve
[This is a lesson that every Christian needs to remember, yet it goes
against what the world would have us believe.  To encourage us in being
willing to serve, perhaps it would help to recall that we have been...]
      1. He came to serve, not to be served - Mt 20:28
      2. He served by giving His life a ransom, dying on the cross for
         our sins
      3. He serves even now, as our High Priest who intercedes for us
         - He 7:24-25
      1. The prophets spent their lives in service for our benefit 
         - 1 Pe 1:10-12
      2. Thus we have been served by men like Moses, Samuel, David,
         Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel and many other "heroes of faith"!
      1. It was the Holy Spirit who inspired the prophets - 1 Pe 1:11
      2. He also inspired the apostles to reveal the gospel - 1 Pe 1:
         12; Jn 16:13
      1. They are the ones who preached the gospel to us - 1 Pe 1:12
      2. Through them, we have come to believe in Jesus - cf. Jn 17:20
      3. Thus we have been served by men like Peter, James, John, and
         Paul, who suffered greatly in their ministry to us! - cf. 1 Co
         4:9-13; 2 Co 11:24-29
      1. They had a keen interest in the things being revealed - 1 Pe
      2. For they had a part in the process of revelation - cf. Dan 8,
         9; Lk 1:11-19,26-38
      3. Thus they too have ministered to us - cf. He 1:13-14
      1. Someone taught us the gospel, others continue to teach us and
         our children
      2. Some have made it possible for us to assemble, and each week
         clean up what we leave behind
      3. In times of sickness, many have prayed and rendered various
         forms of service
[With so many rendering so much service, it is easy to feel pampered.
Indeed, we have been "served by greatness"!  Do we take it for granted?
I hope not.  We can show our appreciation by emulating those who served
us.  So let me offer just a few ways that we can serve others...]
      1. Someone led you to Christ, can you not lead another to Him?
         - cf. Jn 1:35-42
      2. Begin by being hospitable, offering acts of kindness and
      3. At the very least, invite to services, offer a Bible 
         correspondence course
      4. Hone your skills in personal evangelism, seek to improve your
         ability to teach the gospel to others
      1. Many have contributed to your spiritual growth, can you help
         others? - cf. Ep 4:16
      2. Begin by being present at every service, greeting every one
      3. Take a special interest in those who are new, encourage them
      4. Offer to help teach our children, even if it only means to
         assist another teacher
      5. Volunteer whatever service you can render in the work and
         worship of the church
      1. Has anyone ever showed you kindness?  "Be kind to one another"
         - cf. Ep 4:32
      2. Visit the sick or elderly in hospitals, and at home
      3. Render service such as cleaning, transportation, errands, etc.
      4. Minister to the poor, hungry, or those otherwise in need
1. The important thing is that we be people of service...
   a. People who serve others, not just benefiting from the efforts of
   b. People who are producers, not just consumers
2. Serving others is not just the path to greatness in the kingdom, it
   is also the path to happiness  in life:
   "I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you
   must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus,
   that He said, `It is more blessed to give than to receive.'"
                                                        (Ac 20:35)
Shall we not follow both the example and teaching of the Son of Man,
and live to serve others?


--《Executable Outlines