Summary: The result of hypocrisy and living lies is disastrous but the life of living what Jesus tells us will not only enrich us personally but it will expand the Kingdom of God forever!
As we noted last week, Jesus the Christ warns people of allowing darkness into their lives. It is actually God’s desire for every human being to be full of light because God the Creator is Light! Light signifies radiance, purity, holiness, and true life! God created people so that they can be in the presence of God who is Light.
Every human being can be full of the Light of God through belief in and obedience to Jesus Christ!
As Jesus continued to disciple in Chapter 11 of the Gospel of Luke, He actually cited examples of what happens when people allow darkness into their lives. We will learn from the Pharisees and the Experts of the Law what not to do!
Let us be reminded of who the Pharisees and the Experts of the Law were. Just like the Christian faith today with many sects (Evangelical, Catholic, Lutheran, Mormon, etc…), the Jewish Faith during Jesus’ time had at least 4: Pharisees, Saducees, Essenes, Experts of the Law. Along with the Jewish Priests, these groups highly influenced the Jewish Society.
The Experts of the Law were knowledgeable of God’s Word in terms of words, sentences, and grammar. Many of them were Scribes who made copies of God’s Word but many of them were not really students of what God is saying in His Word.
The Essenes on the other hand were hard core students of what God says in Scripture.
The Saducees and the Pharisees were not only strong believers of the Jewish Faith but they were quite involved in mainstream society. The Pharisees leaned toward liberalism while the Saducees were more conservative; they were like the Republicans and Democrats of today.
Open your Bibles now to Luke chapter 11 and read along with me verses 37-54….
As noted earlier, the Pharisees were influential people. Jesus was also impacting society and so the Pharisees sought out Jesus; a Pharisee invited Jesus to dinner.
Based on v38, why did that Pharisee invite Jesus to dinner??
Look also at v53-54…
And based on v39-41, did Jesus know the motives of the Pharisees??
Jesus knew the intentions of the Religious Leaders, which was to trap Him. How can we say religious leaders and not just Pharisees? Look again at v45…..
Jesus spoke not only to Pharisees but to all who are guilty.
Can we be guilty of those things Jesus said?
In v39-41, Jesus described in general who those religious leaders really were:
- Shows off in public but deep inside they are greedy and wicked
Jesus would call them white-wahed tombs; looks good on the outside but actually dead and deteriorating on the inside.
- Foolish people
- No generosity to the poor
Then in v42-52, Jesus, the Son of God, gave the religious leaders 6 woes!
The original Greek word for woe here is oo-ah-eeh (ouai) meaning a denunciation, a public condemnation.
v42-52, Jesus, the Son of God, gave the religious leaders 6 “woes” because they:
v42: gave offerings but neglected justice and love of God
v43: sought attention to themselves!
What do you think Jesus was telling them in v44??
v46: burden people with work which they will not do or help; hypocritical!
Look again at v47…..
What do you think Jesus is warning them of here??
v47: approved other leaders of ignoring God’s Word!
Can Christians today fall into this trap?
There is one more woe, then we’ll come back to v49-51 for the result of those leaders’ doing. Verse 52 is the last woe…..
What is Jesus saying here?
v52: They have been given the gift of leadership but they taught lies!
v49-51 tell us the result of those leaders’ hypocrisy! How serious was the sins of those religious leaders during Jesus time? Read v50-51 with me again….
God made those hypocritical religious leaders 2000 years ago responsible for ALL the deaths of God’s prophets!
Shouldn’t we take heed of God’s warnings here? We shouldn’t even ask, should we?
We better take heed of Jesus’ warnings!
I think there are 2 applications here. First of all, 1. Can Jesus say any of those woes to us personally?
During the week, let us all evaluate ourselves with those 6 woes from Jesus Christ.
Let me review that list again:
v42: be careful of neglecting justice and the love for God
v43: watch out for selfish actions
v44: does God approve of how we live our lives?
v46: are we burdening others with work which we do not do or help with?
v47 actually brings out the second application of this passage; but first for us; are we ignoring God’s Word? How often are we to read the Bible??
When we don’t read the Bible everyday, we are actually ignoring God’s Word.
And let us never forget God’s warning in James 1:22 - Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says!