Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | July 22, 2018

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected the weightier provisions of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness”

Today’s devotion comes from Matthew 27:1-10.

“Now when morning came, all the chief priests and the elders of the people conferred together against Jesus to put Him to death;  and they bound Him, and led Him away and delivered Him to Pilate the governor.

Then when Judas, who had betrayed Him, saw that He had been condemned, he felt remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, saying, “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood.”  But they said, “What is that to us?  See to that yourself!”  And he threw the pieces of silver into the temple sanctuary and departed;  and he went away and hanged himself.  The chief priests took the pieces of silver and said, “It is not lawful to put them into the temple treasury, since it is the price of blood.”  And they conferred together and with the money bought the Potter’s Field as a burial place for strangers.  For this reason that field has been called the Field of Blood to this day.  Then that which was spoken through Jeremiah the prophet was fulfilled:  “AND THEY TOOK THE THIRTY PIECES OF SILVER, THE PRICE OF THE ONE WHOSE PRICE HAD BEEN SET by the sons of Israel;  AND THEY GAVE THEM FOR THE POTTER’S FIELD, AS THE LORD DIRECTED ME.”  Matthew 27:1-10.

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The chief priests and elders cared more about how they handled the thirty pieces of silver than how they handled Jesus.

Jesus was greater than the temple, but they cared more about not depositing the silver into the temple’s treasury than they cared about the life of Jesus.

“But I say to you that something greater than the temple is here.  But if you had known what this means, ‘I DESIRE COMPASSION, AND NOT A SACRIFICE,’ you would not have condemned the innocent.”  Matthew 12:6-7.

And yet, we read in today’s Scripture, “all the chief priests and the elders of the people conferred together against Jesus to put Him to death;”  See verse 1.  But, when Judas felt remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver, the chief priests did not likewise feel remorse and turn away from their plot against Jesus but merely said:  “It is not lawful to put them into the temple treasury, since it is the price of blood.”  See verse 6.

We are reminded of Matthew 23:23-28.

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!  For you tithe mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected the weightier provisions of the law:  justice and mercy and faithfulness;  but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others.  You blind guides, who strain out a gnat and swallow a camel!

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!  you clean the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside they are full of robbery and self-indulgence.  You blind Pharisee, first clean the inside of the cup and of the dish, so that the outside of it may become clean also.

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!  For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.  So you, too, outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.”  Matthew 23:23-28.


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