By Bill Byrnes
“…Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocites! You pay your proper tithes—yet you omit the weightier matters of the law – judgment, mercy and faith! Ye blind guides; which strain at a gnat…and swallow a camel ! Matthew:23:23-24
When I started this blog my intent was to keep politics out of it. I think I’ve done a good job at that. But, I also promised to give insight into what the Bible had to say about handling life’s problems and issues in today’s world. There certainly is no shortage of information for it. So, let’s get political!
Four years has passed and guess what—it’s time for another Presidential election. For openers, I can tell just because the G.O.P. has their parade of rank and file “pablum-peukers”. I have nothing against Conservatives. What bothers me the most about them is when they start ranting about how the Bible justifies their cause(s). What’s more amazing is how many good people appear to “buy” into their erroneous rationales without going to the one source that could clear up any of them – the Bible!
With that in mind – here we go again. The religious right-wingers use Christianity for their own convenience. Their own political agenda is more important than the true meaning of the Word. This practice is certainly not new. In fact, the Bible addresses it quite pointedly! What current political factions do you think of as you read the following passages?
Matthew: 23:3-14: “ …the teachers tell you to do things-but they don’t do them. They are unwilling to help those who struggle under the weight of their rules…They do good things so that others will see them. They love to have the most important seats at the feasts. They love to be greeted with respect in public. You are hypocrites! You take away widows’ houses…then you say long prayers so that people will notice you! You will have a worse punishment! You give to God 1/10th of all you earn–but you don’t obey the really important teachings of the law–justice, mercy & loyalty!”
Jesus continues his scolding of the Pharisees(religious leaders who led the synagogues) in Matthew:23:25-27: “You are hypocrites–you wash the outside of your cups & dishes but inside they are full of things you got by cheating others and by pleasing only yourselves. You are like tombs painted white. Outside they look fine, but inside they are full of bones of dead people and all kinds of unclean things. It’s the same with you! People see you & think you’re good–but on the inside, you are full of hypocrisy & evil!”
Jesus sure didn’t mince words when criticizing the Pharisees-who were the religious “right” of their time.
If you’d like to read more(& yes, Jesus certainly didn’t stop there)..read the Bible. Start with the New Testament–book of Matthew.
But, regardless of what epoch we live in, one fact remains true: whether Tea Party, GOP, or Pharisee, or even Democrat…we can fool people sometimes–but we CANNOT fool God!