In the days of Jesus, the Pharisees and Scribes were the religious elite. The Scribes copied the Scriptures diligently while the Pharisees memorized them and dressed in holy fashion, so no one would pass by without realizing they were passing by a rabbi, a teacher, a religious guru! They loved the homage and respect people gave them, and so they found extravagant ways to show their “holiness”. What they called holiness Jesus described another way in Matthew 23:25-28:
In Romans 1:18-23, Paul describes the way God has made Himself known to all of humankind from the foundation of the world. Because of His power, beauty, and knowledge displayed through His creation, all of humankind is to glorify Him. Failing to glorify and show gratitude to God results in a futile and foolish way of life that glorifies animals and man himself rather than the Almighty Creator. How does a person glorify God? The prophet Daniel shows us one way: by humbling yourself.
Jesus was, among other things, the best teacher to ever walk the earth. His teachings apply to real life and they are deep, but not always the simplest to understand. Often His disciples asked Him to clarify His teachings (Lk. 8:9; Jn. 14:5). In one instance, however, we see a problem that still exists today: They were afraid to ask the questions that plagued their minds. Look at Luke 9:45b:
“…they did not understand this statement, and it was concealed from them so that they would not perceive it; and they were afraid to ask Him about this statement.” (NASB95, Emphasis mine)
How many times have you sat silently in a Bible class with questions rolling around in your brain, but were too afraid to ask? When you are afraid to ask your questions, remember:
Across all social media platforms there are, at any moment, a nearly infinite number of arguments over petty and insignificant issues. Somewhere along the line our culture has become enamored with the ability to argue and insult each other about everything.
Our world is full of "new" things. Television shows have new episodes every week, new car models are produced every year, scientists are constantly making new discoveries. New phones, tablets, and other devices are constantly being produced. If anything can be said confidently about our world it is that we like new things.
Wouldn't it be nice to find some peace? Wouldn't it be great to find something that will never be replaced by the next iteration?
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