As we continue this Christology, we reached the section where we focus upon Jesus’ relationship with the Pharisees. Volatile, to say the least. Jesus was doing so much good, but these religious leaders were so upset that he wasn’t doing it on the right day or in the right way. They were more concerned with their traditions than they were God’s Kingdom expanding right before their eyes.
Here are some things to remember about this group that couldn’t stand Jesus:
- They were the most religious people of the day. In fact, if you listed the activities of what a godly person should be doing, they would be on the top of the list. Scary to think how you or I might be categorized today.
- They were willing to work with people they didn’t like to combat someone they disliked even more – Jesus.
- Jesus didn’t make the relationship any better by telling them that hookers and robbers were closer to the Kingdom of God than they were (Matt 21:31).
- Jesus was hardest on the most religious, softest on the least religious. He expected more.
- Matthew 23 is one of the roughest messages Jesus ever delivered and it tells the Pharisees that they may teach well, but their lives are taking them and leading others straight to hell.