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Bible Study Topic: Seeking Prominence

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At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, "Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?"
He called a little child and had him stand among them.
And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.
Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 18:1-4
 
But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first.
Matthew 19:30
 
When the ten heard about this, they were indignant with the two brothers.
Jesus called them together and said, "You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them.
Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant,
and whoever wants to be first must be your slave,
just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."Two Blind Men Receive Sight
Matthew 20:24-28
 
Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples:
"The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat.
So you must obey them and do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach.
They tie up heavy loads and put them on men's shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them.
"Everything they do is done for men to see: They make their phylacteries wide and the tassels on their garments long;
they love the place of honor at banquets and the most important seats in the synagogues;
they love to be greeted in the marketplaces and to have men call them 'Rabbi.'
"But you are not to be called 'Rabbi,' for you have only one Master and you are all brothers.
And do not call anyone on earth 'father,' for you have one Father, and he is in heaven.
Nor are you to be called 'teacher,' for you have one Teacher, the Christ.
The greatest among you will be your servant.
Matthew 23:1-11
 
They came to Capernaum. When he was in the house, he asked them, "What were you arguing about on the road?"
But they kept quiet because on the way they had argued about who was the greatest.
Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, "If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all."
Mark 9:33-35
 
An argument started among the disciples as to which of them would be the greatest.
Jesus, knowing their thoughts, took a little child and had him stand beside him.
Then he said to them, "Whoever welcomes this little child in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. For he who is least among you all,he is the greatest."
Luke 9:46-48
 
"Woe to you Pharisees, because you love the most important seats in the synagogues and greetings in the marketplaces.
"Woe to you, because you are like unmarked graves, which men walk over without knowing it."
Luke 11:43-44
 
When he noticed how the guests picked the places of honor at the table, he told them this parable:
"When someone invites you to a wedding feast, do not take the place of honor, for a person more distinguished than you may have been invited.
If so, the host who invited both of you will come and say to you, 'Give this man your seat.' Then, humiliated, you will have to take the least important place.
But when you are invited, take the lowest place, so that when your host comes, he will say to you, 'Friend, move up to a better place.' Then you will be honored in the presence of all your fellow guests.
For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted."
Luke 14:7-11
 
The Pharisees, who loved money, heard all this and were sneering at Jesus.
He said to them, "You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of men, but God knows your hearts. What is highly valued among men is detestable in God's sight.Additional Teachings
Luke 16:14-15
 
"Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector.
The Pharisee stood up and prayed about himself: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men,robbers, evildoers, adulterers,or even like this tax collector.
I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.'
"But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, 'God, have mercy on me, a sinner.'
"I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted."The Little Children and Jesus
Luke 18:10-14
 
While all the people were listening, Jesus said to his disciples,
"Beware of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around in flowing robes and love to be greeted in the marketplaces and have the most important seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at banquets.
They devour widows' houses and for a show make lengthy prayers. Such men will be punished most severely."
Luke 20:45-47
 
Also a dispute arose among them as to which of them was considered to be greatest.
Jesus said to them, "The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who exercise authority over them call themselves Benefactors.
But you are not to be like that. Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves.
For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves.
Luke 22:24-27
 
I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock.
Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them.
Acts 20:29-30
 
For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.
Romans 12:3
 
if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully.Love
Romans 12:8
 
Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.
Romans 12:10
 
Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.
Romans 12:16
 
May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus,
so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Romans 15:5-6
 
If anybody thinks he is a prophet or spiritually gifted, let him acknowledge that what I am writing to you is the Lord's command.
If he ignores this, he himself will be ignored.
1 Corinthians 14:37-38
 
You know that the household of Stephanas were the first converts in Achaia, and they have devoted themselves to the service of the saints. I urge you, brothers,
to submit to such as these and to everyone who joins in the work, and labors at it.
I was glad when Stephanas, Fortunatus and Achaicus arrived, because they have supplied what was lacking from you.
For they refreshed my spirit and yours also. Such men deserve recognition.Final Greetings
1 Corinthians 16:15-18
 
Not that we lord it over your faith, but we work with you for your joy, because it is by faith you stand firm.
2 Corinthians 1:24
 
You are looking only on the surface of things. If anyone is confident that he belongs to Christ, he should consider again that we belong to Christ just as much as he.
2 Corinthians 10:7
 
For some say, "His letters are weighty and forceful, but in person he is unimpressive and his speaking amounts to nothing."
Such people should realize that what we are in our letters when we are absent, we will be in our actions when we are present.
We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.
We, however, will not boast beyond proper limits, but will confine our boasting to the field God has assigned to us, a field that reaches even to you.
We are not going too far in our boasting, as would be the case if we had not come to you, for we did get as far as you with the gospel of Christ.
Neither do we go beyond our limits by boasting of work done by others. Our hope is that, as your faith continues to grow, our area of activity among you will greatly expand,
so that we can preach the gospel in the regions beyond you. For we do not want to boast about work already done in another man's territory.
But, "Let him who boasts boast in the Lord."
For it is not the one who commends himself who is approved, but the one whom the Lord commends.
2 Corinthians 10:10-18
 
In this self-confident boasting I am not talking as the Lord would, but as a fool.
Since many are boasting in the way the world does, I too will boast.
You gladly put up with fools since you are so wise!
In fact, you even put up with anyone who enslaves you or exploits you or takes advantage of you or pushes himself forward or slaps you in the face.
2 Corinthians 11:17-20
 
Have you been thinking all along that we have been defending ourselves to you? We have been speaking in the sight of God as those in Christ; and everything we do, dear friends, is for your strengthening.
For I am afraid that when I come I may not find you as I want you to be, and you may not find me as you want me to be. I fear that there may be quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, factions, slander, gossip, arrogance and disorder.
I am afraid that when I come again my God will humble me before you, and I will be grieved over many who have sinned earlier and have not repented of the impurity, sexual sin and debauchery in which they have indulged.
2 Corinthians 12:19-21
 
Fourteen years later I went up again to Jerusalem, this time with Barnabas. I took Titus along also.
I went in response to a revelation and set before them the gospel that I preach among the Gentiles. But I did this privately to those who seemed to be leaders, for fear that I was running or had run my race in vain.
Yet not even Titus, who was with me, was compelled to be circumcised, even though he was a Greek.
This matter arose because some false brothers had infiltrated our ranks to spy on the freedom we have in Christ Jesus and to make us slaves.
We did not give in to them for a moment, so that the truth of the gospel might remain with you.
As for those who seemed to be important,whatever they were makes no difference to me; God does not judge by external appearance,those men added nothing to my message.
Galatians 2:1-6
 
The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery;
idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions
and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Galatians 5:19-21
 
Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.
Galatians 5:26
 
If anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself.
Each one should test his own actions. Then he can take pride in himself, without comparing himself to somebody else,
for each one should carry his own load.
Galatians 6:3-5
 
Those who want to make a good impression outwardly are trying to compel you to be circumcised. The only reason they do this is to avoid being persecuted for the cross of Christ.
Not even those who are circumcised obey the law, yet they want you to be circumcised that they may boast about your flesh.
May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.
Galatians 6:12-14
 
I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God's grace given me through the working of his power.
Although I am less than the least of all God's people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ,
Ephesians 3:7-8
 
As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received.
Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.
Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.
Ephesians 4:1-3
 
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.
Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.
Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death, even death on a cross!
Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.Shining as Stars
Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed,not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence,continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling,
Philippians 2:3-12
 
But I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, my brother, fellow worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take care of my needs.
For he longs for all of you and is distressed because you heard he was ill.
Indeed he was ill, and almost died. But God had mercy on him, and not on him only but also on me, to spare me sorrow upon sorrow.
Therefore I am all the more eager to send him, so that when you see him again you may be glad and I may have less anxiety.
Welcome him in the Lord with great joy, and honor men like him,
because he almost died for the work of Christ, risking his life to make up for the help you could not give me.
Philippians 2:25-30
 
Join with others in following my example, brothers, and take note of those who live according to the pattern we gave you.
For, as I have often told you before and now say again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ.
Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is on earthly things.
Philippians 3:17-19
 
and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.
Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.
Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.
And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Colossians 3:10-14
 
The brother in humble circumstances ought to take pride in his high position.
But the one who is rich should take pride in his low position, because he will pass away like a wild flower.
For the sun rises with scorching heat and withers the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich man will fade away even while he goes about his business.
James 1:9-11
 
My brothers, as believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, don't show favoritism.
Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in shabby clothes also comes in.
If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, "Here's a good seat for you," but say to the poor man, "You stand there" or "Sit on the floor by my feet,"
have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?
Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him?
But you have insulted the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you? Are they not the ones who are dragging you into court?
Are they not the ones who are slandering the noble name of him to whom you belong?
James 2:1-7
 
Not many of you should presume to be teachers, my brothers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.
We all stumble in many ways. If anyone is never at fault in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check.
James 3:1-2
 
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