3 31 19 Sermon - "Jesus And The Hypocrites"
Please turn in your Bibles to the gospel of Matthew.
Matthew the 23rd chapter
I'm going to read verses 1 through 12.
Keep a bookmark here. We will be coming back to this. I will be spending quite a bit of time in the gospel of Matthew. So you want to keep your place.
Matthew chapter 23 starting a verse number one as I read it. I will remind you that this is the word of God.
Then Jesus spoke to the crowds and to his disciples saying. The scribes and the Pharisees have seated themselves in the chair of Moses. They're for all that they tell you do and observe. But do not do according to their deeds. Where they say things and do not do them. They tie up heavy burden to lay them on men's shoulders but they themselves ready willing to move them with so much as a finger.
What they do all their deeds to be noticed by men. For they brought in their phylacteries and lengthen the tassels of their garments.
They love the place of honor Banquets in the chief seats in the synagogues and respectful greetings in the marketplace and then called Rabbi by men. But do not be called Rabbi for one is your teacher and you are all Brothers. Do not call anyone on Earth. Your father for one is your father who is in heaven? Do not be called leaders for one is your leader. That is Christ.
But the greatest among you shall be your servant. Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled. And whoever humbles himself shall be exalted. Let's pray.
Lord as I read this passage over the last several weeks I tried to imagine what I would have felt like if I had been a scriber a Pharisee in the crowd I can imagine how they probably squirmed. But the Lord the more I read this passage I started to squirm. Is it possible I prescribed for a Pharisee?
What is a blunt words? These are the words of Christ.
These are words of warning.
Lord I ask this morning that you would allow his words to speak as they were spoken. But I pray that you would help us to drop our barricades and and not think of somebody else or point fingers. Somebody else puts a look at our own Hearts our own lives.
Or we see here the fundamental principle The Kingdom that you melody.
Floor that make us humble.
Next time we have nothing to offer you God. We have nothing to bring all of our righteousness as filthy rags. We only stand in the righteousness of Christ.
Lord speak I pray open our eyes our hearts our minds through the Holy Spirit. To your word is it's breached. amen One of the Cardinal rules of public speaking is to know your audience. This is certainly true in preaching. We see this model than the life of Apostle Paul. Paul preached one way to the Philosopher's at Mars Hill the priest another way to the Jews in the synagogue the priest another way to the proselytes Down by the Riverside. He understood his audience. But nobody squares exemplified is like the Lord Jesus the Lord Jesus knew his audience. Fact John Chapter 2 tells us that he knew what was in man. So he knew his audience perfectly. So is he's preaching to the crowds here in chapter 23, he's preaching first of all to them about the scribes and Pharisees.
He knew the crowd the new the crowds inclination is towards arrogance towards Pride. It's The Human Condition. We want to be upfront and they appear to be up here the first speaks to the to the crowd as a general. Look at chapter 23 verse 1 the Jesus spoke to the crowd and to his disciples saying so you'll see here in in verses 1 through 12. He's talking about about them. All right verse 20 verse 1 verse 2 say the scribes and Pharisees have seated themselves in the chair Moses there for all they tell you do at observe and do not according to their deeds for they say things that I do that they don't notice them. So he's talking to the crowd. He's warning them about being them about being the scribes and the Pharisees.
Well, you probably know that the scribes and the Pharisees were the religious leaders in and Israel. They were the religious leaders this verse closely to it seems like they kind of self-appointed them themselves to that. Look what it says the words to saying the scribes and Pharisees have seated themselves of the chair Moses. Okay, so they were claiming some Authority that maybe wasn't rightly theirs.
Maybe they were getting us Authority through the wrong means. but nevertheless verse 3 Therefore all they tell you to do it observed they did have they had the authority They Were Somehow obtained The Authority so because they were in the chair of Moses because they were some sort of religious leadership. Jesus says, you should listen to them. Okay, whatever they tell you do it observe it. But he says there's three do not do according to their deeds for they say things and do not do them. So they were in positions of authority, but they did not practice what they preach verse for they tie up heavy burdens and lay them on men's shoulders but they themselves ready willing to move them with so much as a finger. So they laid these laws these regulations is legalism on them on the people. While making sure that they were except make sure that the day we're not subject to their own requirements. They they they said in the chair. They they were the judge the jury. Jesus I wasn't don't they have some Authority granted so do limbs or what they tell you, but do not do it like they do they don't practice what they preach. It was all for show verse 5 But they do all the days we've noticed by men for they broaden their phylacteries. Phylacteries were these little boxes that they made that we could change Bible verses. And again, they kind of the created this it's not scriptural per se but they make me read the verses in the Old Testament where they were to make the the the the word font looks so between Horizon and gray about her hands. So what they do is they put these little boxes they strapped into their wrists or even their forehead. Then I walked around your house spiritually work. They were carrying the word with them everywhere they went Right. So if your spiritual you got to make a bigger box, right? That guy's got a little box how she has to dry in a big box.
And it makes them the tassels of their garments. Okay, again that they would try to dress holy they separated themselves from the crowd and and show their Authority. So they use ornate as possible and they would they would they would have a contest but you had the longest tassels. There's all it was all for show 6 they love the place of honor at the banquets. in the cheap seats in the synagogues
for 7 they and the respectful greetings in the marketplace. They like to be noticed that they like people to put the pay attention to look at the Electra feet on his wrist with the tassels on His Garment. I went over the bank when they wanted to send that you said here. This is the best. This is the best city in the synagogue. They said in the front row. I like the rest of you.
Set the boys here.
They want the Chiefs if they wanted me, but they had forgotten. the primary foundation of the kingdom of God Okay.
verse 8 Well verse 7 in the marketplaces and being called Rabbi by men do not be called Rabbi for one of your teacher and you are all Brothers. Do not call anyone on Earth. Your father for one is your father is in heaven not be called leaders Rodger leader. That is Christ. But the greatest among you shall be your servant out here is the foundation of the kingdom of God humility. The greatest among you shall be your servant whoever exalts himself shall be humbled and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted. So he tells the crowd you need to choose a different path. Don't be like them. You may have to repay them, but don't be like them choose a different path choose the path of humility. Choose the path of servanthood. Don't choose the path where people exist for your benefit you chose a bad for you or a benefit to others.
Then Jesus turns his scathing gaze to the scribes and Pharisees directly that we have to assume that In This Crowd. That was a mix crowd. There was there was the disciples there was the multitude but apparently in the crowd there were the scribes and Pharisees now you'll notice cuz the number 13 But woe to you. So, where's the 1 through 12? It's their butts. They She stopped talking to the crowd and general warning them. I guess being a Pharisee. But then it Narrows is focus any points out to a group of people probably in the front cheap seats, right? And he says don't he says I say to you. He addressed them in verses 1 through 12 as scribes and Pharisees, right? We're very very long at all. You've heard scribes and Pharisees scribes and Pharisees which apostle are the third title that you can probably say. Your head scribes Pharisees. Hippocrates, right. Look at 4:13 to you scribes Pharisees Hypocrites. Look at verse 14. Will you scribes Pharisees Hypocrites? Look at verse 15. What do you scribes Pharisees Hypocrites? 23. What do you scribes Pharisees Hypocrites first 25. What are you scribes Pharisees Hypocrites? I think you get the picture.
Those of us who've read the New Testament does a super familiar with the New Testament. We almost by the Pharisees and hypocrites.
this word hypocrisy
Strange Love, it's not found in the Old Testament. Now that the concepts early is in the Old Testament that usually in the context of insincere worship. Okay, so the name epoxy the word isn't there but the concept is people who worship insincerely but not their heart. Write they bring an offering but it's not the best. But the word itself is not in the Old Testament. In fact in the New Testament. It's only found 16 times 13 times and Matthew and seven times in this chapter. So this is the bulk of the teaching of the New Testament in the Bible.
that I I remind you that these are Jesus's words. This is his sermon.
Christ is the one using this terminology. Okay, so I'm not preaching to Hypocrites Jesus.
So why the harsh words? I mean, these are some harsh words you read the rest of chapter 23. man Why would he why would he speak this way? I mean to their face that they're hypocrites.
Why would he do that? Why the harsh words? Well, Jesus knows that apocracy brings God's Wrath. Jesus knows that apocracy brings God's Wrath Again, verse 13 scribes Pharisees Hypocrites because you shut off the Kingdom of Heaven from people for you. For you to not enter in yourselves to go until these Hypocrites are going to enter the kingdom verse 14. What do you describe a hypocrite because you devour widows houses in for a pretense you make long prayers. Therefore you will receive greater condemnation.
there there any condemnation by praying right I don't think we know of course the The Scribe in the in the in the formation of the temple, right? The Department's most is just as be merciful to me a sinner describe. The Pharisees says I'm glad I'm not like him why is praying right? He's praying.
so even in their prayers are earning condemnation verse 33 You serpents?
Are you buy pers? How will you escape the sentence of hell?
Not enter the Kingdom of Heaven they do Enter Hell.
Jesus knows that apocracy brings God's Wrath therefore he spells it out. He he speaks very harshly.
You read this chapter. He says that the hypocrite wants religion, but for his or her own uses. J44 it for a pretense you make long prayers. You know that they want to claim. Holiness they want to Proclaim their religious Behavior, but only for when it gets them. Only for what he gets them.
17 you fools and blind man, which is more important the gold or the tip of the sanctifies the gold and who is the author that is nothing but he didn't work out this system where money was more important.
So the hypocrite uses religion once religion but only for his or her own uses. They want the status the position the greed. the approval of men he or she has religion only for the advantage over others that gives that someone said this is not original but I like it the hypocrite serves the devil while wearing the uniform of Christ. Hippocrates serves the devil while wearing uniform prank with the first 15 Well, you scribes Pharisees Hypocrites because you travel around on sea and land the big one proselyte. I told seems like they're so good right there their missions minded that they'll go on land on sea to get one convert when he gets one that goes on to say and when he becomes one you make him twice as much as son of Hell's yourselves. Wow. Hippocrates serves the devil while wearing the uniform of Christ 15 16 23 25. He says Woah. Woe to you scribes and Pharisees Hypocrites of condemnation denunciation. Shame on you to you. This is not going to work out good for you. You think you're earning God's approval? You can think you're repressing God. You're not Willow to you. because epoxy brings God's Wrath Proverbs 6 16 through 19 There are six things with the Lord hates.
the Lord hates things Oh God is love sure is. He also hates things what a heart that devises wicked wicked plans feed the Run rabbit lie to the evil a false witness who heard his lies and those who spread Strife among Brothers guy can't hate things right the number to a lot of versus they don't say hypocrisy and deception but is that not what a biography is? Is it not fair to say God hates apocracy? God hates apocracy. Look at Matthew 24 51.
Matthew 24:51 talk about judgment to come. I just want you to notice the phraseology it will cut him in pieces and assign him a place with the Hypocrites that place with his weeping and gnashing of teeth. Right? So the Phillies describing this chapter is worthy of judgment and part of the judgment is he'll be a sign of the Hypocrites Hypocrites have one of the worst judgments coming.
Romans 2 verse 1 therefore you have no excuse every one of you who passes judgement. For that for that which you judge another you condemn yourself. For you who judge practice the same things? Do we know that the Judgment of god Riley Falls of those who practice such things so get what's he describing? He's describing hypocrisy, but do you suppose this old man when you pass judgment on those who practice such things that do the same yourself that you will be that you will escape the judgement of God. Or do you think lightly of the riches of his kindness and tolerance and patience not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourselves in the day of judgement and the revelation of the righteous Judgment of God. You should strong workers Lisa strong words about about hypocrites who will not repent of their hypocrisy will not repair their nose in a boxing Rings God's Wrath there for his harsh warnings about it. Don't be like them. He says,
Jesus says it's because he knows that a pocket release the self-delusion. The poverty leads to self delusion mean if you read this this chapter, I didn't take the time to read every verse I had sent out the email this week asking you to read the whole chapter. Would you read this chapter?
You see the hypocrite begins to fake his or her Deeds or actually it was a true Godly this response. I've But they do all their deeds to be noticed by men. After they brought their phylacteries and lengthen the Tesla gun.
Hey, dude, that's actually what I was looking for. But they're diluting. So their hypocritical in their prayers verse 14. I mentioned you make long prayers and receive condemnation and their evangelism verse 15 to go to see the land to make a proselyte but there are hypocrites and evangelism. They're Hypocrites in their worship. You read verses 16 through 20 through 22, even if they alter their their their worship is is hypocrisy in any they're deluding themselves. God is pleased with the first 23 they're giving I want you scribes Pharisees Hypocrites for you tithe mint and Dill and cumin and have neglected the way your provisions of the law. Justice and mercy and faithfulness again, I I witness and I and I and I and I worship and I and I give verse 25 through 28. What do you scribes Pharisees Hypocrites for you clean the outside of the cup and of the dish their parents, but inside you're full of robbery and self-indulgence. Verse 27. What are you are you are like whitewashed tombs, which on the outside of your beautiful but on the inside are full of dead men's bones. They deceive themselves doing these things. Doing these things were the basis of their rightness with God.
Now it's important to understand what apocracy is not so listen closely. Okay support understand. What is not? Some of you have some tender consciences is he talking about me because I realize that you know, I don't always practice what I preach and I don't practice what I preach. Okay, but let's be clear. Epoxy is not the disparity between what we are and what we long to be. gay it's the it's not the party is not the disparity between what we are and what we long to be.
it is not the gap between what we do and what we
it's not the gap between what we do what we want to do. I'm sorry. It is not the gap between what we want to do and what we actually do. We always Perfection it comes through Christ. Right, we always today will see him face-to-face and will be glorified.
We all understand it's expiration is a process. So I'm not talking about the disparity between what I what what what what I want to do and what sometimes I actually do.
I shall always live up to my standards specialist gods. But I want to see myself either thinking I'm a Christian because of what I do.
Hypocrisy is claiming to do one thing while doing another. Gay epoxy is is claiming that you're doing one thing. Well actually do another what someone said epoxy is theatrical religion. It's theater. It's for show. performance
Analisa self-delusion hypocrite deceives others while he lives but deceives himself when he dies cuz he's been deluded into thinking that all what he always thinks he does is what God is looking for. Thoroughly, Jesus knows about the danger of being an unsaved Christian.
Jesus knows about the danger of being unsaved Christian again verse 13, Matthew 23:13. Woe to you scribes and Pharisees and hypocrites because you shut off the Kingdom of Heaven from people who do not enter in yourselves. Nor do you allow those who are entering to go in?
mark, 7:6 He said that he did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites. As it is written quote. This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. But in vain do they worship me teaching his doctors the precepts of men neglected the Commandment of God, you hold to the tradition of Ben but you noticed they're honoring with their lives. They're pretending but their heart is far from him. That's the Old Testament definition of hypocrisy even though the words not there, Isaiah did prophesy about it? They honor me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. So they claim to be Christian, but they're not. They're not. American churches are I'm afraid full of people who think they're Christians, but they aren't
They are Christians in name and appearance only.
Matthew 7 turn the Matthew 7
Not everyone who says to me Lord. Lord will enter the kingdom of heaven. But who does my will but he who does the will of my father who is in heaven will enter many will say to me on that day Lord Lord. Did we not prophesy in your name and your name cast out demons and they perform any Miracles then I will declare to them. I never knew you. Depart from me. Ye you who practice lawlessness? So here are people who were convinced that they were Christians. But the Lord did not know them. It's because they were trusting in their deeds. You see that they were trusting in their works. Now what he says depart from me you who practice lawlessness their good works. We're not of faith and whatever that was not of faith is sin. So they're the worst and then taking your kids in the law was actually the opposite was Wallace this
It ain't safe when they stand before the Lord. They'll be fine because look what I did. I did this I did that I did that.
Lord says, no. I don't even know you.
What they lacked was faith. What's the worst this is Anna Gospel of Works what they lacked was faith.
Many Americans faith can be described as what has been termed moralistic therapeutic deism. Moralistic therapeutic deism. I'm sorry. Let me go back to Robin's by skip the verse Romans chapter 1 In it, the righteousness of God is revealed from Faith to Faith. So where does the righteous of God go from Faith as is written, but the righteous man shall live by faith next. Even the righteousness of God through faith in Christ. Jesus to all who believe there's no distinction. For the demonstration I say of his righteousness at the present time so that he would be just and justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. Which of the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly his faith is counted as righteousness.
So the problem here is you have people who claim to be Christians but they don't have faith in Christ. Their faith is in their Works. Your faith is in a performance. They believe that somehow they are earning God's approval. Again, the scribes and Pharisees here. They were they were praying. They were evangelizing. They are worshipping.
So what is moralistic therapeutic deism, this is this phrase been around for about 15 years or so. It was a sociologist studied the study of teenagers in Evangelical churches to see what they really believed. And basically this is what they believe moralistic. What does it means God wants people to be good nice and fair to each other as taught in the Bible and by most world religions the good people go to heaven when they die.
Do people go to heaven when they die?
Therapeutic the central goal of life is to be happy and feel good about myself. Deism a God exists who created in order the world and watches over human life, but it doesn't need to be particularly involved one's life unless you need him. So that words. It's be nice. Be happy that God's there in case you needed. That's not Christianity. That's a totally different faith. That's a faith to get you in front of the the junction of Crisis. I don't even know who you are. but Lord, I
So should we not do those days? Of course, we should do those things in faith and face it. The only way into heaven is through the blood of Christ. The only way to to to to get God's approval is through the blood of Christ through his sacrificial death. That's what I'm trusting in not and how long I pray. Not have online how many times I go to church and how much I give? Bible how many times eyewitness?
Is my faith in the sacrificial death of Jesus Christ? That's the question. That's what a Christian is. Don't delude yourself.
Hippocrates earn the wrath of God
people who come empty-handed earn receive Grace So lastly Jesus offers. Hope for the Hypocrites again. Go back to Matthew 23. verse 37
Matthew 23:37 Jerusalem Jerusalem who kills the prophets and Stones those who were sent to her. How often I wanted to gather your children together the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not you were unwilling.
Jesus offers hope hypocrite We read it Romans 2:4. Or do you think lightly of his riches of his kindness and tolerance and patience not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance God wants you to to see your city want you to see the hopelessness of your performance and and repented that a turn to Christ. That's the only way of kindness and God knows that the ritual is kindness and tolerance and patience God in his Mercy does not immediately judge sin, aren't you glad for that? Right. It does not immediately judge. Send. Where would we be if he did?
You know, what are the basic things that God said the day you eat of that you'll die. Write your sin will kill you. They ate it anyway. your big brother
The day you eat it you'll die. Now if they did not die that day physically I've thought of that before but he died spiritually, but the point is I could have killed him. He could have killed him on the spot.
But he did not because he's gracious. Is kind is patient is tolerant he gives you time to repent it gives you time to empty your hands of your performance and effort and turn to the cross.
Call on Jesus and faith and turn to Christ with empty hands. The day of the great hymn hymn writer wrote nothing in my hand. I bring Simply to thy cross I cling. God is not to be impressed with your works when you stay at the judgment. He is not going to care. There's no report card.
If you weighed in the balances, you're going to be found wanting.
If you stand with Christ by your side.
Well done thou good and faithful servant enter the joy of the Lord. 1st Peter
Who threw him are believers in God through Christ?
Who raised Christ from the dead and gave him glory so that our faith so that your Faith and Hope are in God. The only way to God is through Jesus Christ. You could give everything to be burned is Paul said in for screpesi's 13, you give everything you got you could die a martyr, but your faith. Is it in Christ? Jesus has harsh words for you.
As the song that was sung by the by the young ladies you can fool yourself.
You can fool others. But you can't fool God. God knows you Turn from your sins, including the sin of hypocrisy and turn to Christ for he alone can save you.
But I would ask that each of us examine our own heart no thing about your neighbor your brother who the guy in front of you. Or your husband or your wife or your mom or your dad or your cousin think about yourself when you stand before God, what will you have to offer? It is not the blood of Christ. That is not faith in Christ. Nothing else will satisfy. His your holy demands.
So that I would pray that if if we know we're doing one thing. And claiming to do an outer that we would examine ourselves. And that's why we doing this. repent of that don't be diluted the thinking somehow God is approving that.
Salon, for those here who are not Christians. They may call himself a Christian. But they have yet to recognize their sinfulness and throwing themselves at the mercy of Christ. I pray today before it is too late. They would do that.
But the Lord are are there are those of us here who are believers. We are Christians. We do have faith.
But yet Lord.
Where we're hiding something where we're not.
we like people to as on the back of the church.
But we know we're a hypocrite.
I thank you for your patience God. I thank you for your grace for your kindness. You give us time to repent of that.
So I speak two hearts. the Holy Spirit have his way in our lives. Amen.