June 29

Written by Bill Grandi on June 29th, 2022

Before I write or say anything else I’d like to ask that you do something for me and for a friend.  One of my dearest friends is Ryan Spires and his wife, Amanda. They are at Mayo Clinic where Amanda is having surgery this morning.  It is not my place to say for what, but please whenever you read this stop and say a prayer for them both. Amanda’s surgery is this morning.

Now to less important things.

Yesterday’s devotion  was Part 1 of two on Matthew 23. It focused on the first 12 verses, with particular emphasis on verses 10-12. As stated in the devotion, I originally had planned to focus on the “do as I say not as I do” aspect of those verses, but changed when I read verses 10-12. Today’s thoughts will naturally (if you read the Scripture) focus on the outside vs. the inside.

The Pharisees were good at several things. Self-righteousness. Hypocrisy. Double-standards. Pointing fingers at others. Jesus confronted them (and others) about this in Matthew 5-7 (Sermon on the Mount) and it wouldn’t be His last time.

But here! WOW! It is like Jesus has both barrels wide open. Seven times He says “Woe to you.” And he minced no words after the “woe.” Blind guides. Hypocrites. OUCH! He ripped the mask right off and exposed them for who they were.

Three of my favorites are found back-to-back-to-back in verses 23-28. “You tithe but…” “You are like a cup…” “You are like a white-washed tomb…”  The first deals with the whole idea of legalism, of religious actions taking the place of caring. The second with the outside of a cup which was clean but full of filth inside. The third like a tomb which was clean on the outside but full of dead man’s bones on the inside.

Can’t get more vivid than that.

And the picture/lesson is obvious. We can look good on the outside. We can look holy and righteous. We can even act like it. But our true nature is what’s inside. The possibilities are two: righteousness or unrighteousness.

It goes deeper, obviously, than a tithe/cup/dish/coffin; it refers to the heart. While I may look holy, righteous, and “all together” spiritually by observation, the proof is in my heart.

I wish I could say I have it all together now, that I never find myself with the position of wearing a mask. I can’t.

But it’s never too late to clean up and start being holy and allowing the Holy Spirit to make me into His clean vessel.


2 Comments so far ↓

  1. Amen, Bill! Yes, we can appear lovely on the outside, but actually be rotten to the core. And in today’s society, I’d say hypocrisy has gone absolutely viral. Lord, create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit within me!
    Yes, we’re finally back home, so I will resume blogging again on this coming Tuesday.
    Hope you are feeling 100% better since the surgery!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Glad you make it home and hope it was a wonderful time with Virginia. Your comment hit the spot on the mark Martha. I look forward to reading your blog again. I am getting stronger every day (there is a song in there).