Faithfulness, Fruit of the Spirit

Blind Guides

Matthew 23:23

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matter of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness.

Not only did the Lord call the Pharisees a brood of vipers, he also called them hypocrites and he cautioned the disciples not to be like them. They liked to do things publicly in order that everyone would see how good and righteous they were. They gave strict attention to the adherence of the law of Moses and all that God had commanded, right down to tithing everything grown from seed.

You can be sure that there would have been absolute precision in everything that was to be tithed. I have no doubt that every Pharisee owned a pair of scales and a set of weights so that they could carefully weigh out the exact portion for the Lord. What a shock for them to hear Jesus chastise them in front of all the people.

Jesus was so angry with them, calling them blind guides. Holy men who taught the law but didn’t practice what they preached. Yes, they had tithing down to a fine art but they had forgotten justice, mercy and faithfulness.

This verse reminds me not to get so entangled in the ritual of Christianity as to lose the essence of true Christian service to God – to do justice, love mercy, walk humbly with God.

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