Luke 22:26
But ye shall not be so: but he that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve.
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(26) He that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger.—The latter word naturally carried with it, as in the old monastic rule, juniores ad labores, the idea of service. In Acts 5:6, “the young men” appear as a distinct body in the society of disciples, with functions like those of the later deacons or sextons; and the same sense is, perhaps, traceable in 1Timothy 5:1; Titus 2:6; 1Peter 5:5.

He that is chief.—Here again the Greek word came to have a half-technical sense as equivalent, or nearly so, to bishop or presbyter. So in Hebrews 13:7; Hebrews 13:17; Hebrews 13:24, where it is rendered “they that have the rule over you.”

He that doth serve.—The verb is the same as that from which the word “deacon” is derived, and, with Matthew 23:11, Mark 10:43, probably suggested the ecclesiastical use of the word. It is noticeable that the first recorded example of that use is in the salutation to “the bishops and deacons” of Philippi (Philippians 1:1), the Church which more than any other was under St. Luke’s influence. The “seven” of Acts 6:3; Acts 6:5, of whom we commonly speak as the first deacons, are never so named in the New Testament.

22:21-38 How unbecoming is the worldly ambition of being the greatest, to the character of a follower of Jesus, who took upon him the form of a servant, and humbled himself to the death of the cross! In the way to eternal happiness, we must expect to be assaulted and sifted by Satan. If he cannot destroy, he will try to disgrace or distress us. Nothing more certainly forebodes a fall, in a professed follower of Christ, than self-confidence, with disregard to warnings, and contempt of danger. Unless we watch and pray always, we may be drawn in the course of the day into those sins which we were in the morning most resolved against. If believers were left to themselves, they would fall; but they are kept by the power of God, and the prayer of Christ. Our Lord gave notice of a very great change of circumstances now approaching. The disciples must not expect that their friends would be kind to them as they had been. Therefore, he that has a purse, let him take it, for he may need it. They must now expect that their enemies would be more fierce than they had been, and they would need weapons. At the time the apostles understood Christ to mean real weapons, but he spake only of the weapons of the spiritual warfare. The sword of the Spirit is the sword with which the disciples of Christ must furnish themselves.But ye shall not be so - Christ here takes occasion to explain the nature of his kingdom. He assures them that it is established on different principles from those of the world; that his subjects were not to expect titles, and power, and offices of pomp in his kingdom. He that would be most advanced in "his" kingdom would be he that was most humble; and in order to show them this, he took a towel and girded himself after the manner of a servant, and washed their feet, to show them what ought to be their feelings toward each other. See John 13:4-17.

He that sitteth at meat - The master of the feast, or one of his guests.

But I am among you ... - This was said in connection with his washing their feet. He "showed" them how they ought to feel and act toward each other. "They" ought, therefore, not to aim at office and power, but to be humble, and serve and aid one another.

26. But ye … not—Of how little avail has this condemnation of "lordship" and vain titles been against the vanity of Christian ecclesiastics? See Poole on "Luke 22:25"

But ye shall not be so,.... See Gill on Matthew 20:26.

but he that is greatest among you; in age or gifts, or would be thought to be the greatest, who is most ambitious of grandeur and authority, which perhaps might be Peter's case, who was the oldest man:

let him be as the younger; as John, the beloved disciple, who was the youngest of them; and be as modest, and as humble as he, and reckon himself as in his place, and condescend to men of low estates, and esteem each other, even the youngest, better than himself. So the phrase, (r), "both greater and lesser", is used of the elder and younger.

And he that is chief; that is, a spiritual ruler and governor in the church of God, as all the disciples were:

as he that doth serve; for the apostles and ministers of the word, though they are over others in the Lord, and have the rule over them, yet they are servants for Jesus' sake, and so ought to reckon themselves; See Gill on Matthew 20:27.

(r) Targum in 2 Chronicles 31.15.

But ye shall not be so: but he that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve.
Luke 22:26. ὑμεῖς δὲ, etc., but ye not so, elliptical, ἔσεσθε or ποιήσετε understood.—ὁ νεώτερος, the younger, “who in Eastern families fulfils menial duties, Acts 5:6” (Farrar).—ὁ ἡγούμενος, the leader or chief, the name of those in office in the Church in Hebrews 13:7, also in the epistle of Clement; therefore viewed by some as a note of a late date, but without sufficient reason.

26. let him be] Rather, let him become,—let him shew himself to be in reality.

the younger] who in Eastern families often fulfils menial duties. Acts 5:6.

Luke 22:26. [Ὑμεῖς δὲ, but ye) Having lowered (humbled) them by this address to them, He exalts them by that other in Luke 22:28.—V. g.]—νεώτερος, younger) in age or in discipleship.

Luke 22:26Doth serve

See on minister, Matthew 20:26.

Luke 22:26Doth serve

See on minister, Matthew 20:26.

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