Rivalry is instigated by desiring to achieve greatness in this life. For instance, the most gifted athletes seek to beat past world records. Aiming at achieving such unprecedented records is motivated by a desire to become the greatest, in any field or business activity. You become the greatest person, as long as no-one else has managed to reach the level of your achievement.
However, all humans were created in God’s image, for purposes known only by God. Like sheep gone astray, each does things without identifying with the Creator (Isaiah 53:6). The most important thing to note is that each person is as different as varieties of different plants in the bush.
The world population is currently estimated to be over seven billion. Each person is peculiar and was created to fulfill the role that no other can fulfill. Instead, most people find comfort in seeking to please other people in their surroundings. The greatest handicap of humanity is seeking approval from other people. That provides desirable impression, where other people are considered as promoting one’s own greatness.
However, the passion to serve other people should not be driven by those being served. History is filled with great achievers, unwilling to listen to the opinions of those in their surroundings. Such achievers accomplished what they knew would be of benefit to humanity. People sought to invalidate them, but those achievers listened to their intuition, more than what other people suggested.
This is not implying that other people do not really matter. The aim is to serve people, according to survival needs. Otherwise, without consideration of other people’s survival, our own survival on this planet is in vain. The most important datum is that our own survival is met easily when we attend to the survival requirements of other people.
There is not a single person, ever created without purpose. Unfortunately, the current evil system does not allow a person to identify with his/her own purpose of existence. The leadership structures make it extremely difficult for a person to choose to do what is not approved by established authorities.
The record of Joseph’s story in the Bible shows that his brothers’ hatred of him, emanated from disclosure that Joseph’s dream projected him as attaining leadership position ahead of them. Joseph’s future leadership could not be kindly received by his brothers.
The same was the case with David, whose killing of the arch-enemy of Israel, thrust him into some unforeseen enmity with King Saul. Instead of congratulating the young man, King Saul found himself in sleepless nights, fearing David’s ascension to the throne. Unbelievably, even fathers become jealous of their own children’s achievements, at times. Their desire being that children should not take up positions that leave fathers in positions of inferiority.
Hierarchical structures are designed to adulate others, while making the rest inferior. Such is the system of this world’s civilization. For those seeking to know sources of sinfulness, the hierarchical structures are the hallmarks of that which has held this world into sinful captivity.
Looking across humanity, one gets persuaded to conclude that other people are comparatively better than others. But, that is an illusion. People can only be compared to themselves, not with other fellow humans. This is just as one cannot compare the value of a banana, with that of an avocado pear. Even though both are in the class of fruits, they cannot be compared in terms of value.
Similarly, a human being can only be compared to him/herself. Even a child cannot be compared to his/her own parents. The genes may be similar, but the personalities would be totally different. We were all created in God’s image, but our characteristics and purpose of creation are different. None is better or worse than others.
However, the existent evil system seeks to project a lie that some people were created inferior to others. The passage of scripture that insists that all humans were created in God’s image is invalidated. This is the reason why Jesus came to set people at liberty (Luke 4:18-19).
Everyone is obsessed in aiming to become better than other people, without necessarily making other people better. Once the person achieves the status that makes him/her feel better, he/she then seeks to ensure that everyone is maintained at lower position than him/her.
This is why in some countries you have state leaders who, on attaining leadership positions, they seek to be life presidents. They do not tolerate anyone aiming at becoming better than them. They view themselves as gods, desiring to be worshiped by other people.
Such leaders simply reflect an evil worldly system. They get condemned as dictators, yet it is an evil worldly system that they project. Cain was projecting this evil system, when he murdered his brother Abel. The same system is projected, even by Christians that are adjudged as truthfully projecting God’s word.
But, as long as such Christians adulate other people, while invalidating others, they would be enhancing the system that has got nothing to do with God. Jesus was clear on how God’s Church was supposed to be administered (Matthew 23:8-12).
Interestingly, the parable of the talents shows three people entrusted with unevenly distributed talents (Matthew 25:14-30. The Master allocated those talents according to those people’s natural aptitudes, but expecting them to produce according to their abilities.
The Master could not have expected the one given two talents to produce as much as the one given five talents. But the servants are expected to display the zeal, causing them to be rewarded according to their commitments. Apparently, the one with one talent despised his own talent.
The Master had appreciated his weaknesses, hence giving him just one talent. The single talent holder’s weaknesses did not cause his condemnation, as accorded a talent according to his abilities. Nevertheless, the commitment to use his single talent could have qualified him for better things.
The narration of the parable could be reversed. Supposing the one with one talent had doubled his; where the five talent holder buried his, chances are that the Master could have still possibly taken those five talents, giving to the one having doubled his.
People may not be evenly talented. But that has got nothing to do with their eternity, including the fact that they were all created in God’s image. The most important thing is the attitude that each projects towards God’s gifts. To whom much is given more is expected and vice versa (Luke 12:48).
Let’s also bear in mind that the same Jesus who gave the parable of the talents is the one who also gave the parable of the laborers in the vineyard (Matthew 20:1-16). Also, another important datum to bear in mind is that God is not a respecter of persons (Acts 10:34 and Romans 2:11).
The existent evil system seeks to categorize people according to ranks. But God seeks to allocate and reward people according to abilities. The one with five talents did not need to supervise the one with one talent, for instance [See “What’s in a title, if not to deceive?”]
All human beings were created in God’s image, each with a specific purpose for which he/she was created. However, the suppressive system does not allow anyone to access their potential. The uneven abilities among those in that parable are, actually, caused by the existent evil system. Those who manage to achieve something worth considering, ahead of others, seek to ensure that no-one else is ever allowed to attain anything better.
The examination systems, in education, are meant to ensure that those in authority are the ones to decide on who qualifies. Those achieving greater things in life, without approval, are considered as rebels. But such achievers are, actually, pillars in developmental programs.
In our modern times, examples of Steve Jobs and Bill Gates can be cited. The information technology world sits on the achievements of people regarded as nonentities, in our educational system. These stood to defy the evil system that seeks to categorize people according to established authoritarian philosophy. [See also “False data stripping towards true leadership”]
The greatest person the world has ever known is none other than you. God created you in His own image. You have a place in His vast universe. Jesus came to set you free from the captivity of Satan. Those suppressing your potential are not gods, but may actually be the instruments of the existing devil’s system. Their fear is to see you succeeding and possibly, becoming better than them.
Those people may, themselves, not even be aware that they are used by the devil. They actually assume being faithful servants of God. But they serve to invalidate that which was created in God’s image. They view themselves as people of authority, knowing better than others in their environment. But, if holding anything better; others also hold what is better in their own specialties.
The authoritarians also need freedom from such warped thinking. This is the main reason why Jesus came (Luke 4:18-19). The truth that remains, for all eternity, is that no-one was created as better than others. We are all equal in God’s eyes; each having been created to be greatest, the world has ever known, but in one’s own areas of specialty.
Andrew Masuku is the author of Dimensions of a New Civilization, laying down standards for uplifting Zimbabwe from current state of economic depression into a model for other nations worldwide. A decaying tree provides an opportunity for a blossoming sprout. Written from a Christian perspective, the book is a product of inspiration, bringing reliefs to those having witnessed strings of unworkable solutions––leading to the current economic and social decay. In a simple conversational tone, most Zimbabweans should find the book as a long awaited providential oasis of hope.
The Print copy is now available at Amazon.com for $13.99
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