James Edwards commenting on the story of James and John requesting places at the right hand and left hand of Jesus who remains in the middle, the central place:
The brothers hope to honor Jesus while honoring themselves. How easily worship and discipleship are blended with self-interest; or worse, self-interest is masked as worship and discipleship.*
We would do well to consider our own selves.
Selfish ambition, pride, and self-righteousness is so deceptive. We can easily think that we are worshipping Jesus when we are in fact blending in our self-interest, or masking our self-interest as worship and discipleship.
*James R. Edwards, The Gospel According to Mark, The Pillar New Testament commentary (Grand Rapids, Mich; Leicester, England: Eerdmans; Apollos, 2002). 322.