“Are You A Brood Of Vipers?” By Kirk Hunt
But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, “Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
Matthew 3:7 NKJV
The Pharisees and Sadducees were the religious leaders and Scriptural (Torah) scholars of the era. John the Baptist, as the son of the Temple Priest, Zacharias, likely knew many of them personally. One must wonder why John deliberately called the religious elite “vipers.”
It is easy to criticize leaders, right or wrong. In too many cases, the revelation of bad behavior and villainous schemes of leaders is the source of the criticism. In too many other cases, the mismatch between the words spoken from the lectern, and the lives led in the streets, is the reason for disdain.
Consider the moneychangers (merchants) in the Temple. The violation of the Mosaic law, and the sanctity of that holy place, was tolerated because the High Priest and other Temple officials were being paid. A clear violation of the letter and spirit of the Law they claimed to love so much.
We associate snakes with sin, evil and deception. By calling them Vipers, John deliberately references the poison that some snake breeds use to better devour their prey. There is no subtleness in John’s message.
Consider the Christian life you live. Does it match the Christian Gospel you preach? I pray that men and women see you as a child of God and not as a walking snake.
Think: Does my life match the Gospel of Jesus Christ? Why or why not?
Pray: “Lord, help me to live in obedience to Your Word and Spirit.”
Copyright © October 2018, Kirk Hunt
This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.