Thursday, January 31, 2013

"Do As I Say..."

[From Jan. 28, 2013]

"Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, 'The scribes & Pharisees sit on Moses' seat; therefore, do whatever they teach you and follow it; but do not do as they do, for they do not practice what they teach.'"
(Matthew 23:1-3)

Jesus was always having run-ins with the Jewish religious leaders of his day: Scribes, Pharisees, & Sadducees.  He was not a fan.  He railed against their blatant hypocrisy and failure to lead the people the way God intended them to.  Matthew 23 has verse after verse of Jesus' warnings to the people about these leaders.

But I noticed something quite interesting today as I re-read this passage.  Jesus doesn't completely discredit these leaders.  Not really.  He tells the people that they've earned a certain amount of authority because of their position.  They "sit on Moses' seat."  Meaning, they've been adequately trained and have come through the ranks according to tradition.  SO LISTEN TO THE CONTENT OF THEIR TEACHING, Jesus says.  Just don't look at their lives as examples!  They don't live what they teach.

Wow.  Harsh!  I wonder if the same could be said for many of us PASTORS?  Listen to our sermons & bible studies.. but don't follow our lives, because we don't live it.  Wow.  

Forgive me, Lord.  Forgive me if I've led people astray by my actions.  Help me to be more like you.  AMEN.

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