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Standalone Sermons

May 14, 2017 | Rev. Steve Cottrell

Turning Failure Into Success: The Story of a Mom Who Messed Up

Matthew 20:20-28

Full Service

Meet the Family! (Matt. 4:21 & Mark 1:19-20)
  • Dad – Zebedee the fisherman
  • The Boys – James & John
  • The Mom – Salome


Setting the Scene

Matt. 16:21 – Jesus foretells his death and resurrection (1ST?)

Matt. 16: 24-25 – Take up cross and follow.  Lose life/Find it

Matt. 17:1-2, 5-8 – Peter, James & John at the Transfiguration

Matt. 17: 22 -23 – Jesus foretells his death and resurrection (2nd?)

Matt. 18:1-4 – Who is the greatest?  Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest!

Matt. 19:16-22 – Rich young ruler – sell it all and follow – “he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions”

Matt. 19:27-30 – Peter “we have left everything and followed you.  What then will we have”.  Thrones, hundred fold reward and eternal life.  “But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”

Matt. 20:17-19 – Jesus foretells his death and resurrection (3rd)


What’s Wrong With Ambitious Determination, Dedication, Devotion?

  • Great when aligned with God’s purposes
  • Tragic when based on selfish pursuits


The Ask
  • sit on his right and left side
  • serving beside Jesus as his key officials
  • authority, position, privilege, responsibility, security


Aren’t these things that any mom might want for her kids?


The Problem
  • when dedicated ambition is motivated by earthly priorities it is misaligned with God’s kingdom values
  • leadership, responsibility & service are not about personal gain
  • Salome and the boys were still caught up in the temporary idea of kingdom and position


This was not about true faith or sacrificial dedication

This was about maternal pride & jealous ambition


The Rebuke
  • Jesus gives a corrective response with grace
    • You have no idea! Are you prepared?
    • cup = blessing or testing
  • James and John give an immediate response “oh yes we can”
  • Jesus teaches that authority belongs to God the Father
    • for those he has chosen
    • for those he is preparing


To be near him, means a call to share in his suffering

Jesus takes the ask for earthly crowns and answers with a call to sacrificial servitude


The Response - A lasting legacy!
  • Next Scene – At the Cross (Mark 15:40-41)
  • Final Scene – At the Tomb (Mark 16:1-8)


Despite knowing the implications and the cost of being a disciple, Salome and her boys press forward with Christ as dedicated and devoted followers


The Legacy
  • Salome goes the distance!
    • Despite the personal and family consequences
  • James the first
    • Martyred (Acts 12:1,2)
  • John the last
    • Exiled (Rev. 1:9)


The Power of a Mom on Mission

You don’t have to be perfect when you follow the PERFECT SINLESS ONE


If you want your kids to be spiritually hot, get them close to the flame!

  • Personal Spiritual Vitality
    • Example and influence
  • Community/Body of Christ
    • Strength, protection and nurturing
  • Stronger Together!
    • More fuel is better
    • Fan the flames


Let’s give our kids the best opportunity to fall in love with Jesus, his people and his mission.


All In Discipleship
  • Salome puts herself and her boys on the front line
    • Didn’t turn away because of distracting priorities
    • Didn’t turn back because of cost

She was faithful to the end


What do you want your story to be?

Series Information