Word of Jesus Part 20
Mat 23:1 Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,
Mat 23:2 Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat:
Mat 23:3 All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but
do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.
They still taught the law correctly but works were not an
example to follow.
We can do that also. We can teach one thing in church or I could even write good
things in my bible comments but that doesn't mean that my life is what it should
be. I hope it is though. We can easily tell someone what is right but not live right
ourselves. That is why we must follow after Christ and not after those preaching
Christ if they stray from their own teachings. It is safer to just keep our eyes
on the Lord at all times, studying the word diligently.
Mat 23:4 For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on
men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their
If we sometimes encourage others to go out among the poor and work among them preaching the
gospel and do not do any of the labor ourselves, we could fall into this
category. A good pastor will not ask any of his congregation to do anything that
he is not willing to do himself.
Many pastors try to do it all themselves and the load gets very heavy.
Mat 23:5 But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad
their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,
Mat 23:6 And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the
Mat 23:7 And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.
There is a temptation for all who work in the ministry to get exalted and bask in
the praises of men. We must avoid this and remember always that we have nothing
that we did not receive.
Mat 23:8 But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and
all ye are brethren.
Mat 23:9 And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father,
which is in heaven.
Mat 23:10 Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.
Jesus tells us over and over again to stop exalting one over the other. This has
been the problem in practically every church organization for centuries. We are
not to have a high and mighty church leader who lords over the rest of the flock.
We have to have elders and leaders but they must be as servants ministering in
humility, not as lords and masters. They are not to be exalted by wearing
special clothing to show them as being in a higher position than other people.
I know there are wonderful people that wear a collar and clothes that cause
people to know who they are and what they represent but it really turns some of
us off because Jesus forbade the exalting of one above another.
Mat 23:11 But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.
Mat 23:12 And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall
humble himself shall be exalted.
Mat 23:13 But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up
the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither
suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
We can get so bogged down with commandments of men, activities, even good things, that we miss the message of the gospel. We can be so strict with outward
religious acts and miss the gospel that saves the soul.
The message that Jesus taught Nicodemus was, "You must be born again." If we are
not "born again" by the Holy Spirit of God, we cannot enter the kingdom of God.
When we recognize that we are sinners that need God's salvation, when we are
willing to forsake that sin and allow Jesus to come into our lives cleansing us
from that sin, the Holy Spirit comes to us and we are "born again". We are
changed and a new life in Christ begins. Something happens. It is not just a
religion. As we continue to walk in Jesus Christ, we lose our desire for our old
sins, we become sanctified and filled with God's Holy Spirit. This may happen
all at once or it make take a while as we yield ourselves to God by the study of
His word and prayer; but it will happen if one seeks the Lord. We must not get
sidetracked by other things. The parable of the seed is a good one to read to
understand why not all bring forth the fruits after they come to Christ.
We must not be so busy doing religious things that we miss the message of the
gospel to the lost world around us. "Ye must be born again." If the Lord said
it, we must say it. We can't leave the repentance out. Repentance means to
change, turn around and do different. Once we were lost and without Christ, guilty of sin and on our way to hell. Then we heard the gospel of Jesus Christ.
We listened we obeyed and we became, "Born Again." The whole world needs to hear
this message. Not just feel good sermons and happy worship services but the
message, "Ye must be born again. "
Mat 23:14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows'
houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the
Let us be very careful not to fall into this. We condemn the Pharisees for this
but we must make sure not to do this ourselves. God help us. The ministry must
cleanse itself from fleecing the flock of God. I know it takes money to spread
the gospel but we are going wild with this stuff. There are some that are
selling preaching on the Internet. You can download their sermons if you pay a
Didn't Jesus say, freely you have received, freely give? I'm not criticizing all
fund raising in churches but we need to be very careful here that we don't make
merchandise of the gospel that was freely given to us.
Mat 23:15 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea
and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more
the child of hell than yourselves.
If all we are doing is making converts to a particular religion and no one is
being saved from sin, we are wasting our time.
If all we do is add numbers to our churches with feel good about yourself
messages of positive thinking and no one is "born again" by God's spirit, then
we are wasting our time. If all we do is build a big mega church hoping a little
of the gospel will rub off on people without actually telling them that they
need to repent of sin and be "born again" by the spirit of God. changed from
our own ways and clothed with the righteousness of Jesus Christ, then we are
wasting our time. We might have a large crowd but if they are not saved, we are
deceiving them into thinking they are going to heaven just by being good and
attending church without being truly born again. Jesus said these things, I
didn't. Except we humble ourselves as little children, we shall not enter the
kingdom of God. We must see ourselves as sinners in need of God before we can be
saved. If we teach and tell people to be happy, accept yourself as you are and
that God loves them yet fail to warn them that sin will take them to hell if it
is not forsaken and repented of, then we are not giving them the message of
salvation that Jesus taught.
Mar 1:15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God
is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.
Luk 13:5 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.
Act 3:19 Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be
blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the
Act 17:29 Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to
think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and
Act 17:30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all
men every where to repent:
Act 17:31 Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world
in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given
assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.
If we don't tell people that they need to repent when they come to Christ, we
are leaving out the part that changes their lives and makes them new creatures
in Christ. That is why we are seeing so many come to Christ and their
lives are not changing. We still see divorces, homosexuality, living
together without marriage, and other sins still ruling their lives. They
have not repented and have not been "born again." We don't have to preach
positive thinking messages. If they truly repent and become born again,
God will give them the thinking they need to have. His Holy Spirit will
give them confidence in the Lord. We teach the word and the word will
change their lives. We must move away from watered down messages that
tickle the ears and pleases the crowds.
Mat 23:16 Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the
temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he
is a debtor!
Mat 23:17 Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple
that sanctifieth the gold?
Mat 23:18 And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty.
Mat 23:19 Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar
that sanctifieth the gift?
Mat 23:20 Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all
Mat 23:21 And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that
Mat 23:22 And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and
by him that sitteth thereon.
They were bound to keep an oath if they swear by these things. Jesus instructed
us not to swear.
Mat 5:33 Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, Thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths:
Mat 5:34 But I say unto you, Swear not at all; neither by heaven; for it is
Mat 5:35 Nor by the earth; for it is his footstool: neither by Jerusalem; for it
is the city of the great King.
Mat 5:36 Neither shalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst not make one
hair white or black.
Mat 5:37 But let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is
more than these cometh of evil.
It is better to be safe and not be quick to make oaths and promises that we in
the flesh may not be able to keep. We must commit ourselves to the Lord with a
heart that says, "If the Lord wills, I will do such and such."
Mat 23:23 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of
mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law,
judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the
We should give, worship and do certain things pertaining to the temple, church
or places of worship but not omit sound judgment, mercy and faith.
That is how the message of the gospel can be hidden even in our church services.
We can be so busy doing good things but neglect the preaching and teaching of
the word that saves souls and changes the lives of the hearers. Once a person
receives Jesus Christ, they need to study the word and grow in the things they
I see this badly neglected in today's churches. We have great praise and worship
that makes us feel great and worship God but when the singing stops and we are
not around good music, we will need the word to sustain us. It is the word that
brings the gospel message. It is the word that is hidden in the heart so that we
will not desire to sin. It is the word that is badly needed. Many are using
drama to present the gospel. We must be very careful not to neglect the deep
truths of the word of God if one chooses to go that route. We can't just build
big churches and hope people somehow make heaven as they are influenced by the
church, we must make sure they hear the word so they know what it is to be born
again and make heaven their future home.
If they don't receive the word, then when they leave our church buildings and
the praise and worship stops, they will not have something inside that will keep
them from evil. They need the Holy Spirit and the Word of God continually. Faith
comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. We must not neglect the word.
Jesus taught all the time and when he wasn't teaching, we was praying. He is our
Mat 23:24 Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.
Here is religion again. They worried more about outward observances and not
about the condition of the souls or the plight of the needy.
Mat 23:25 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the
outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and
Mat 23:26 Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and
platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.
The inner man needs changed by the word of God rather than have outward
religious rituals which do nothing for the condition of the soul and spirit of
Mat 23:27 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of
dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness.
Let us pray that our religious institutions are not only outward shows without
Mat 23:28 Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are
full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
Mat 23:29 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the
tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,
They honored Moses, Isaiah and Elijah but did not live what Moses Isaiah and
Mat 23:30 And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have
been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.
Yet these same Pharisees condemned Christ to death only a few weeks later.
Mat 23:31 Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of
them which killed the prophets.
Mat 23:32 Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers.
Mat 23:33 Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation
Mat 23:34 Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and
scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye
scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city:
Mat 23:35 That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth,
from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias,
whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.
Mat 23:36 Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this
They rejected the one sent from God to bring the only message of salvation that
mankind needed to hear. They had the same spirit in them that caused the
previous persecution of the prophets before them who rejected correction, change
and repentance. We can't even now receive the gospel and claim to know Jesus
Christ and turn around and live how we want to live without any change. How can
we say we love God and never live by His word.
Can one marry a husband or wife and then neglect to hear anything they have to
say and have a marriage? Would you say that your wife loves you or your husband
loves you and they never spend any time with you or listen to anything you had
to say? What kind of love is that?
Yet that is how many of us treat the Lord of our salvation.
Some of the churches that arose up after Constantine forced Christianity upon
all people, did these very things the Pharisees did. When some tried to
warn against departing from the truth of the word and substituting doctrines of
men, they were killed, persecuted and jailed. Even after the Protestant
Reformation, some of them also began to persecute those who pointed our error.
I realize that a few people arose that were truly heretics but even then they
must not be killed, persecuted or harmed by the church. The church can warn
against false doctrine but never harm anyone. Jesus said to be wise as
serpents and harmless as dove.
Mat 23:37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest
them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children
together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would
He offered them peace, love, joy, eternal life, victory over sin, and the
infilling of God's Holy Spirit and they refused.
Mat 23:38 Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
Mat 23:39 For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say,
Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.
Second coming prophesied. Those that rejected Christ now will have ancestors
that will say, "Blessed is He that comes in the name of the Lord."
Spoken of in the Psalms
Psalm 118:26 Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the LORD: we have blessed
you out of the house of the LORD.
Words of Jesus Part 21