“Observe And Do” By Kirk Hunt
Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to His disciples, saying: “The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat. Therefore whatever they tell you to observe, that observe and do, but do not do according to their works; for they say, and do not do.”
Matthew 23:1–3 NKJV
Jesus observed and commented. He clearly and plainly told the majority of folk that their religious scholars and leaders preached one thing but clearly practiced a different thing. How is it possible to mess up, “Observe and do the right things”?
Was Jesus critiquing pagan Romans? No. Was Jesus rebuking Roman collaborators or prostitutes? No. Jesus criticized the very people who should have known better than anyone else.
The Pharisees preached righteousness and adherence to the law, but their motivations however were corrupt or self-serving (Matthew 23:5). Of course, these high minded religious experts were not above exploiting the poor or vulnerable in the name of profit (Matthew 23:14). In general, the Pharisees did the easy part of looking sanctimonious, but did not do the hard part of living righteously (Matthew 23:23).
Living righteously before God and man is easier said than done. That is why the Holy Spirit helps those men and women who seek Him. Religious law can only help you realize how sinful you are. It takes God’s spirit and grace to fulfill the law by living a sanctified life.
Take a good look at how you actually live. Does your life match what you preach (or say you believe)? Seek the Holy Spirit and ask Him to help you live out what you say.
Think: Observe yourself. Are you really doing the hard work of living righteously?
Pray: “Lord, help me to live righteously, no matter the difficulty.”
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.