1. Jesus knew from His experiences with the Pharisees how complainers work to hinder the growth of the kingdom of God and His righteousness. The Lord always considered the source of the criticism. Jesus said, "The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat. So you must obey them and do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach." (Matt. 23:2,3) Ask the Lord to help you wisely consider the credibility of your critics.

2. Jesus knew that there are various types of complainers:

A. Whiners - "The disciples woke Jesus and said to him, "Teacher, don't you care if we drown?" (Mark 4:38) Jesus said, "Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?" (Mark 4:40)

B. Dictators & Controllers - "The chief priests and elders of the people came to Jesus demanding, "By what authority are you doing these things? Who gave you this authority?" (Matt. 21:23) Jesus said, "John's baptism - where did it come from? Was if from heaven, or from men? We don't know, the Pharisees answered. Jesus said, "Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things." (Matt. 21:27)

C. Irritators, Agitators & Blockers - "The Pharisees and teachers of the law asked Jesus, "Why don't your disciples live according to the tradition of the elders instead of eating food with 'unclean' hands?" (Mark 7:5) Jesus said, "Isaiah was right about you hypocrites: as it is written: 'These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.' They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught men." (Mark 7:6,7)

D. Skeptics & Analyzers- "Thomas said to Jesus, "Lord, we don't know where you are going, so how can we know the way?" Jesus answered, 'I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:5,6)

E. Cynics - Nathaniel said, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph? Nazareth! Can anything good come from there? When Jesus saw Nathaniel approaching he said, 'Here is a true Israelite, in whom there is nothing false." (John 1:45-47)

F. Martyrs - But Peter declared, "Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you." And all the other disciples said the same. Jesus said, "Sit here while I go over there and pray." (Matt. 26:35,36)

G. People Pleasers - Jesus said, "Everything the Pharisees do is done for men to see; they love the place of honor at banquets and they love to be greeted in the marketplaces and to have men call them 'Rabbi'. The greatest among you will be your servant. For whoever exalts himself will be humbled and whoever humbles himself will be exalted." (Matt 23;5,7,12)

H. Perfectionists - The Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap Jesus in his words. 'Teacher, we know you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth_ Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?" Jesus, knowing their evil intent said, "You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? _ Give to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's." (Matt 22;15,16,18,21)

I. Hesitators - The disciples came to Jesus and asked, "Why do you speak to the people in parables? Jesus said, In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah: For this people's heart has become callused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes." (Matt 13;10,15)

J. Self-promoters - The mother of Zebedee's sons came to Jesus with her sons and asked a favor of him, 'Grant that one of these two sons of mine may sit at your right and the other at your left in your kingdom." You don't know what you are asking_ Can you drink the cup I am going to drink?_ The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many." (Matt. 20:20-28)

K. Questioners & Problem Finders - The Samaritan woman said to him, "You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink? (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans) Jesus answered her, "If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water." (John 4:9,10)

L. Misery Loves Company People - Martha said, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!" Jesus said, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better and it will not be taken away from her." (Luke 10:40,41)

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