Last summer I was called up for jury duty. I was in the pool of potential jurors, and had to listen to the three days of proceedings as the jury was selected. The trial was going to be a civil lawsuit about medical malpractice, and a question that was posed to each of the jurors was “Can you put a monetary number on the value of a human life?” Most people stammered mumbled answers in the negative, but of course, that didn’t stop lawyers from coming up with a tidy nine figure number for compensation.
What is my value as a human being? If I have value, what is it? For most of us, that nagging question hangs in uncertainty for a lot of our lives. We want to be valuable…we want acceptance and a sense of belonging. We intrinsically know we aren’t complete in and of ourselves; we even coin phrases like “no man is an island” to emphasize our need.
Sadly, for many of us, our chief attempt to find affirmation and value comes through our attempt to gain acceptance and approval from our peers. This, in the immortal words of Admiral Akbar, is a trap!
In our study this Sunday, we’ll read Luke 12:1-12 . Jesus warns his disciples about hypocrisy and the desire to please our fellow human beings over a desire to please God.
According to this passage, what is the central danger of hypocrisy (projecting a false persona)? Why do people do that, and what does it say about where they derive their sense of self-worth?
Whose opinion is most important, according to this passage, and why? In v4, Jesus calls the disciples something he hasn’t called them before in this gospel. coupling that with v 6-7, where should we derive our sense of value and self- worth?
Do you believe you are valuable to God? If you do, what response does that inspire in you? For all of it’s references to things like fear and hell…I found this passage to be hugely encouraging. I hope you will too!