PASSION TO THE CROSS
“But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut the kingdom of heaven in people’s faces.In Matthew 23:13-35 talks about the 7 woes. All these woes bring us the warning how the Christian should behave with others in relationship with Christ. In this small devotion, we shall meditate on three woes.
1. To those who block the door of the kingdom. People who have the eagerness for the kingdom experience have blocked their hope by the so called religious boasting people. The scripture reveal God's quest for man and man's quest for God, but a false Judaism had turned them in to burden of rules too heavy to the borne. False leaders had taken away not only the scriptures but the key to life. The gentiles were forced to go through the external action rather than change of heart. So they blocked the door to the kingdom.
2. To the false strangers. There are many leaders, who were in Jerusalem and among Diaspora who had immense zeal to win converts to their faith. This type of people always concern about the cult or a form, rather than with the larger horizons of new life. Also they were the people well satisfied with themselves, things are measured by self righteousness. Their focus is not on God, nor even the good of the people, but how the prestige can be kept.
3. False Swearers. Today most of the people are addicted to different types of oaths. A false oath taker will always weakens all resolves and finally destroy their characters. As the scripture says we should not take unnecessary oaths, because it is against the kingdom of God experience. But at the same time we cannot fully deny the value of oath. If it really aware of the human weaknesses, it has learn to rely on God's strength. In this context the oath has already become a prayer, so a prayer is far better than an oath.
In this great lent season, let us be careful about these warnings. Many a time we are deceived by the teachings of these leaders who work and do ministry for the sake of themselves and not for the sake of Christ. We must give priority to practice what we say rather than repeating same things. Action is more meaningful than proclamation. God's concern is everyone's change for a new life style. Let this lent be a meaningful time for all of us to rethink and rededicate our life for the better future.
Prayer. O God help us in our weakness to understand the meaning of Thy word, so that we may practice what we preach, and live what we listen.
Rev.K.P.Thomas, The MTC of Dallas, Carrollton.
Rev.K.P.Thomas, The MTC of Dallas, Carrollton