"And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul?[a] Is anything worth more than your soul?"
The Pharisees and the Sadducees were two prestigious groups of Jewish teachers who jockeyed for influence and power. Leaders in both groups failed to recognize Jesus as the Messiah.
Jesus did not seek to have earthly power like the Pharisees and Sadducees. He sought to build a kingdom that would last into eternity.
The pole of power is greasy.
The Roman emperor Charlemagne knew that. An interesting story surrounds the burial of this famous king. Legend has it that he asked to be entombed sitting upright in his throne. He asked that his crown be placed on his head and his scepter in his hand. He requested that the royal cape be draped around his shoulders and an open book be placed in his lap.
That was A.D.814. Nearly two hundred years later, Emperor Othello determined to see if the burial request had been carried out. He allegedly sent a team of men to open the tomb and make a report. They found the body just as Charlemagne had requested. Only now, nearly two centuries later, the scene was gruesome...But open on the skeletal thighs was the book Charlemagne had requested- the Bible. One bony finger pointed to Matthew 16:26 "What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul?"
You can answer that one!!
(from the Applause of Heaven by Max Lucado)
Life is like a play were you have been given the leading role....make it an Oscar winning performance! Empowered by God!