(Thank you, Andrew, for many things, including giving me a copy of The Calvary Road.)
When Jesus talks about servanthood – that whoever wants to be great in God’s Kingdom must be a servant – Jesus is getting to the core of what it means to follow Him. Jesus came not to be served, but to serve. He calls us to make that our attitude, too.
In his classis book The Calvary Road, Roy Hession writes about the centrality of this truth:
Nothing is clearer from the New Testament that Jesus expects us to take the low position of servants. This is not just an extra obligation, which we may or may not assume as we please. It is the very heart of that new relationship which the disciple is to take up with respect to God and to [others] if he [or she] is to know fellowship with Christ and any degree of holiness in his [or her] life. (p. 83)
Hession continues with how our servanthood plays out in our relationships with one another:
Our servanthood to the Lord Jesus is to express itself in our servanthood to [others]…
An unwillingness to serve others in costly, humbling ways [Jesus] takes to be an unwillingness to serve Him, and we thus put ourselves out of fellowship with Him. (p. 85)