Here, the disciples show they understood what Christ was doing, but they immediately let the idea of such awesome power go to their heads by vying for the very top positions. Christ explains that His disciples must use authority in a godly fashion, not for self-aggrandizement as the Gentiles had used it.
Who Are the 'Guests at the Wedding'?
If we, as the elect of God, believe in “Christ crucified” and all that it entails (I Corinthians 1:23), then we must recognize the need for suffering and trial—to drink of the cup that God has prepared for each of us just as He did for our Savior. The apostle Peter encourages us that, if we partake in Christ's sufferings, it will be well worth the effort at His return (I Peter 4:12-13).
We should also realize that in comparison to what was required of Christ, our cup of burden will pale in magnitude; we will only be drinking from the cup He had to empty (Matthew 11:30; Romans 12:1). While these two verses should not be taken to mean that our burdens will be undemanding, we should always keep our personal sufferings in perspective by remaining aware and appreciative of the staggering effort required for our Creator and Savior to make the sacrifices he made.
Martin G. Collins
The Miracles of Jesus Christ: Healing Malchus' Ear (Part Two)
Other Forerunner Commentary entries containing Matthew 20:23: