Messianic Secret

Coming back from lunch today, I heard an old-school Michael W. Smith song, ‘Secret Ambition’ playing. It’s classic early 90’s Christian music that I’m semi-embarrassed to say I loved back in the day. It brings back some memories for sure.

Of all the connections my mind makes with that song though, the one that stands out the most is the connection to a ‘Exegesis of the Gospels’ class I had in seminary. We focused mostly on Mark, and the dominant theme of that Gospel account is the dominant theme of ‘Secret Ambition’, namely Jesus’ hidden agenda as Messiah. His secret ambition was to give his life away, as the song states.  The book of Mark hinges on his three ‘Passion Predictions’ in chapters 8,9, and 10 where Jesus explicitly states that His messianic role is not one of earthly power and might but one where he and his followers must suffer and die. Scholars have even coined the term ‘Messianic Secret’ that is prevalent throughout most in-depth commentaries on Mark.

Easter is approaching, and I find this song and my memories from that challenging seminary class to serve as convicting reminders that ‘whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves, take up their cross, and follow me.

Is that my secret ambition? Is it yours?

Secret Ambition




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