Are you a modern day Pharisee?


The Pharisees in Jesus’ time were revered by the people, but Jesus had very harsh words for them.

These pompous, holier than thou men towered over the people like mighty guardians. They were members of a religious sect who often clashed with Jesus over His interpretation of the Law.

The name Pharisee means (separated one). Hence, the Pharisees separated themselves from society to study and teach the law, but they also separated themselves from the common people and labelled them religiously unclean.

Regardless, the Pharisees commanded respect from the masses because of their pious persona. Still, Jesus was not impressed. He saw them as empty shells and scolded the group for unnecessary punishments they placed on the poor.

In a scathing rebuke of the Pharisees found in Matthew 23 and Luke 11, Jesus called them hypocrites and exposed their sins. He compared the Pharisees to whitewashed tombs, which are beautiful on the outside but  are filled with dead men’s bones and uncleanness on the inside.

 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in. ” (Matthew 23:13).

“Woe to you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you are careful to tithe even the tiniest income from your herb gardens, but you ignore the more important aspects of the law—justice, mercy, and faith. You should tithe, yes, but do not neglect the more important things” (Matthew 23:23).

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs that indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. 28 Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness” (Matthew 23:27-28).

6 comments

  1. Hey Noel,

    Where the heck have you been??? Been praying for you daily. Miss you.

    It is funny that you wrote this post, as I am working on one on this very thing for next week. I read it a couple of weeks ago and have been contemplating on it ever since.

    The thing which really got me in this reading was, “You shut up the Kingdom of heaven against men.” “Nor do you allow those who are entering to go in.”

    These verses really made me think about when we as Christians “convert” others. So am going to do a post on it.

    We must be so careful how we approach others when it comes to God, as not to turn them away from Him. I think sometimes we forget Who we are representing. Good post and thanks for the reminder. God Bless, SR (Hope all is well with you and yours.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello SR! I truly appreciate your concern for me. Thank you so much for your input. There is a lot going on around here. I can hardly keep up, but I am determined to make it to the end.

      There is another verse in Matthew 23 that strikes. Please allow me to share. “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel land and sea to win one proselyte, and when he is won, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves” (Matthew 23:15).

      That verse fits perfectly into the last paragraph of your response. But let me further compliment it with Paul’s words in Ephesians 4:1-6: “Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. 2 Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. 3 Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. 4 For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future.

      5 There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism,
      6 one God and Father of all,
      who is over all, in all, and living through all”

      Like

  2. I finally got it up. I had to re-write it three times or write a book! Hope all is well Noel. I get a feeling it is more than busy, but praying for you daily. God Bless, SR

    Liked by 1 person

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