“Then the Lord said to him, “Now you Pharisees make the outside of the cup and dish clean, but your inward part is full of greed and wickedness. Foolish ones! Did not He who made the outside make the inside also? But rather give alms of such things as you have; then indeed all things are clean to you. “But woe to you Pharisees! For you tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass by justice and the love of God. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone.”
Memory verse : “Would not God search this out? For He knows the secrets of the heart.” Psalms 44:21.
Everyone likes to be addressed with respect, especially from the West African part of the world where I hail from, respect has a lot to do with how you present yourself. It’s an area of the world where people are usually respected for what they seem to possess and at such even people who don’t have in abundance do all to live above their means just so they can be addressed with respect. Respect is therefore driven by what we show to the world and what the world assumes we own.
This is why an individual from a very humble background will go the extra mile to earn that respect and often in the search for all these worldly respect, they do things contrary to the will of God. James nicely explains this adulterous behavior “Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.” James 4:4.
We may be recognised by human but if our rating in the eyes of God is next to nothing then we are simply just like the Pharisees Jesus addressed in today’s bible reading according to Luke 11:39 and therefore we have completely drifted from the path of righteousness and are headed for spiritual death.
When praises of men become more important to the point we have to be intentional about what the world thinks and neglect God, then we are rendering our services and worship to the world and will only reap our reward here in earth.
Many individuals have drifted and though unaware, they have become more self-centered and self-focused neglecting everyone around them. They will simply say I am focused on God and myself only. This again may seem normal to us and the world around but this selfish way of life earns us no access into the presence of God. Jesus says in Matthew 7:21 that “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.”
The will of the Father is for us not only to be clean on the outside but transparent on the inside. We ought to focus on the word of God and with the help of the Holyspirit become truly clean as a whole, both on the inside and out.
Christianity is not about show off, God is more interested in what’s inside of us, so after all is done, He bypasses what the worlds sees and deals with our heart.
- Father I thank you for your goodness and mercies towards me
- I am grateful for your faithfulness to your word despite my imperfections
- Purify me Lord, help me to be pure and clean inside and outside, living totally for you
- My Hope is built in you O Lord, let me not be moved by the wrong doctrines posed by the world
- Help me to reach out to others through your word and let the world come to the knowledge of you
- I receive unction to speak forth with power, and through it souls become saved
- Thank you for the grace not to ask amidst and to abide in you
- Help me to walk with you daily, live my life for you and be at the centre of it all
- Forgive me Lord of all my iniquities, bless me abundantly and make me a blessing unto others, in Jesus mighty name I pray, Amen.