“Whoever does these commandments [of Jesus’] and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven” (Matt. 5:19). The word “great” is here redefined by Jesus and it is defined by the Jesus Creed.
Here is a Jesus Creed way of looking at greatness: “Good deeds turn ordinary people into great people.” That is, true greatness is not measured by fame or fortune but by goodness. The good person is the great person. I suggest in 40 Days Living the Jesus Creed that Matt 5:17-48 recalibrates what greatness is:
1. A great person is one with good relationships.
2. A great person is one who is faithful in marriage.
3. A great person is one who tells the truth.
4. A great person avoids being vindictive and vengeful.
What is greatness according to Jesus? What is greatness in our culture? Jesus deconstructs our greatness and constructs his own.
Many ordinary people are great; many great people are merely ordinary.