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April 16, 2019

Please use the comment section on this page to share insights from today’s reading OR your own personal Bible reading.

Reading along with us in Matthew? Here’s today’s reading:

Matthew 23 (ESV)

Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, “The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat, so do and observe whatever they tell you, but not the works they do.....Continue Reading

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This Post Has 9 Comments
  1. Matthew 23:37-39 (ESV)
    37  “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing! 38  See, your house is left to you desolate. 39  For I tell you, you will not see me again, until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’”

    Christ’s lament over Jerusalem, I believe, implies the deity of Christ in the statement ‘How often would I have gathered your children together’. For the Son of God would have to exist prior to this time to gather ‘your children together’, indicating a time in the past.
    It also reveals the tender compassion of God’s heart. I think of the mother hen who gathers her vulnerable chicks to provide warmth and protection and this is the image that Jesus shares, his desire for Israel. Christ would rather respond in this way toward Israel rather than in the judgment he pronounced.

  2. Jesus saves his harshest criticism for the ones who for the Jews appeared most righteous. But He pulls back the curtain and reveals that their efforts are not about God’s glory but about their own. They put a heavy weight of legalism on others and yet didn’t follow their own standards. It certainly should teach us not to follow in their ways. It also reveals the deception that is in legalism. It is based in mans efforts, having a form of godless but denying its power. It is most wrong because it seems what God wants. But it is striving in the flesh and not living in the Spirit. And it leads to the hypocritical heart that the Pharisees had, seeming to follow God on the outside, but having a heart that is far from Him. And to think these leaders were so blind that they missed Jesus, their Messiah.

    But even Jesus’ harsh words are possibly redemptive. Could God make war against the proud because that is the only way to reach them? Could Jesus lambast the Pharisees because that is the only thing that they would hear? Certainly Jesus’ compassion for Jerusalem comes out at he end as God’s heart is shown to be one who seeks to care, protect and provide as any mother would do for her children…

  3. 37″O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!

  4. Matthew 23:1-7 (ESV)
    These men outwardly looked really spiritual but inwardly they are decayed corpses. They are the fig tree seen in Matthew 21 that Christ cursed because he expected fruit on a tree in bloom and had none. Here God expects fruit but there is none even though they appear mature. But it is all an act.

  5. 1Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, 2″The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat, 3so do and observe whatever they tell you, but not the works they do. For they preach, but do not practice.

    11The greatest among you shall be your servant. 12Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.

  6. I was thinking that pride is the most universal sin, but really I think hypocrisy is. I think we can all look at some place where we have been hypocritical, even if it is only in our mind. How often do we judge our brother’s appearance or behavior with a measure that is not Biblical? How often do we set a standard for others that we ourselves do not meet? How often do we present as righteous, but our thoughts are less than honorable….or even plain evil? How often do we forget our former way of sin and God’s gracious mercy to us in forgiving us, and turn around and ‘tsk, tsk’ at those caught in those ways now? I am thankful that the Holy Spirit slaps me down repeatedly….usually through reading God’s word. Recognizing our own hypocrisy can keep us humble before God and man.

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