CONTEXT: Matthew Henry breaks down this chapter as follows: We have four things in this chapter. I. The parable of the laborers in the vineyard, ver 1-16. II. A prediction of Christ’s approaching sufferings, ver 17-19. III. The petition of two of the disciples, by their mother, reproved, ver 20-28. IV. The petition of the two blind men was granted, and their eyes opened, ver 29-34.
Do you ever get random thoughts? Maybe you are in the middle of writing or in a conversation, thinking about something important or even praying and a random thought just seems to zoom in from nowhere. If you are anything like me the older I get the more often it happens.
One of the things that convince me of the authenticity of the Bible is how it seems there are random thoughts in it, and our text v.17-19, for today is a perfect example. We read this, the story of Christ Foretelling His Death and Resurrection, between two pretty known stories. The first is the Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard v.1-16 and the second is the Special Treatment Request for James and John v.20-28.
At first glance, these verses appear (random thoughts) to have no connection, but as I constantly repeat CONTEXT is everything. If we take v.1-16 as a whole the lesson is simple the Gospel is applied equally to all. If we take v.20-28, likewise as a whole the lesson is similar, the Gospel shows no favoritism to all God’s called. Now, look at v.16 specifically; So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen. and v.28 Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many. The last (Gentiles) will be the first to respond to the Gospel and even though many people will be called few are chosen. After requesting a place of honor, Christ makes it clear that being a servant (the Greek word here is a slave) and ministering to others is the true duty of all who would follow Jesus.
Thus Christ’s announcement of His coming sacrifice for mankind at Calvary seems less random, at least to me 🤔