Monday: Holy Week

Today’s daily reading for Holy Week: Matthew 21:18-46

Cissie’s reflection on today’s Scripture:

Just after Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem, Jesus gets right to work. As we saw yesterday, Jesus drove those buying and selling in the temple out. He cleanses the temple. Today we take a look at 3 parables as Jesus works on teaching truth to the Pharisees “the cleansing of the people”.

In Verses 18-22, Jesus teaches the parable of the Fig Tree. We see the destruction of the fig who bears leaves but no fruit. Teaching us that we can look alive, but without fruit we are dead.

In verses 23-27, Jesus answers the Jewish leaders. The religious leaders raised the question of Jesus’ authority, and He answered by raising the question of their competence to judge such an issue.

In verses 28-32, Jesus teaches the parable of the 2 sons. The point of this parable is that what matters is living for God, not eloquent speech. The religious leaders were good at talking the talk, but their stubborn unrepentant hearts showed a lack of walking the walk. Jesus was teaching them that repentant sinners would become sons and daughters before they would.

In verses 33-41, Jesus teaches the parable of the wicked servant. It was obvious to the Pharisees that they were the wicked servant. Jesus is telling them of things to come: His death and the shifting of spiritual authority from the Pharisees to the apostles.

In verses 42-46, Jesus warns the religious leaders of the result of their rejection that if they continued to reject God and His Messiah: Jesus, that God would pass the leadership of His work to others.

Ultimately, the choice before the religious leaders is the choice before each of us. We can be broken in humble surrender before God or be completely broken in judgment. In Isaiah 45:23, I love the way the NASB translation says it:

“I have sworn by Myself, the word has gone forth from My mouth in righteousness and will not turn back, That to Me every knee will bow, every tongue will swear allegiance.”

Whether we declare Jesus as Lord of our life this side of eternity or not we can guarantee one day we will all declare allegiance to Jesus.

It’s amazing how easy it is mix up our priorities and where our allegiance lays. We pledge allegiance to our flag and our countries. We even give our lives to our careers or school. We do in marriage or having a best friend. Even to our parents and kids, yet we neglect the most important allegiance; a relationship with God.

In a world filled with distractions by things or people buying for our allegiance. We need to remember to cultivate a heart surrendered to God first. Ready to move when He says move because He cares the most for us.

By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.”

I John 4:9-10

What is one way you can shift your priorities to make God first in your daily life today?

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