“And he said unto them in his doctrine, beware of the scribes, which love to go in long clothing, and love salutations in the marketplaces” (Mark 12:38).TEXT — Mark 12:35-44
The Master’s counsel to His disciples against the leaven of Pharisaic hypocrisy is noteworthy. Jesus knew clearly how damaging hypocrisy and its practice can be in the life of God-seeking believers.
In every encounter the Master had with the scribes and Pharisees, He would warn His disciples to distance themselves from the views of these adversaries of Christ. Such expressions as ‘beware…’, and ‘take heed to yourselves…’, are reflective of the warnings to avoid both the teaching and practice of the hypocrites.
Hypocrisy or duplicity is a self-deluding sin. It defiles, demeans, and devalues a soul before God. It is a tool in the hands of Satan to make a man/woman build his/her hope on sinking sand. The miry ground of self-deception is part of what Jesus would not allow any of His followers to experience. The Master cataloged the hypocritical attitude of the Pharisees and Scribes including gorgeous ceremonial dressing to command respect, receiving religious greetings in public places, seeking the highest seats in the synagogues and social gatherings, and pretentious long prayers while defrauding and defiling widows around them.
The hypocrite must understand “That the triumphing of the wicked is short, and the joy of the hypocrite but for a moment?” (Job 20:5). They will not escape God’s judgment unless they repent.
Our God hates hypocrisy. It is the bane of true worship of God and must be avoided by true worshippers at all costs. These are the Lord’s demands from us.
Thought for the day
The hypocrite has the worst career in life – he deceives himself in an attempt to deceive others.
- in one year
- JOSHUA 1 – 4