Tag: Pharisees

A Society of Things

John MacArthurby John MacArthur

“‘For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also’” (Matthew 6:21).

In wealthy countries, where the focus is on material things, believers must strive for the right perspective on possessions.

Today’s text answers the simple but age-old question, Where is your heart? When our Lord answers the question, it is clear He is referring to all of life’s major preoccupations and investments—anything that receives most of our thinking, planning, and expenditure of energy.

The religious leaders of Jesus’ day had their hearts in the wrong places. Among their many other sins, the Pharisees were thing-oriented—covetous, greedy, avaricious, and manipulative. Matthew 6:21 is right in the middle of a portion of the Sermon on the Mount that deals with the Pharisees’ misplaced priorities regarding material possessions. The verse fits with Christ’s overall purpose in the Sermon, which was to affirm His standard of righteous living in contrast to the Pharisees’ inferior, hypocritical standard (Matt. 5:20).

Matthew 6:19-24 tells us how believers should view their luxuries and wealth. Most of us live in cultures that constantly challenge us with their emphases on materialism. We all spend some time thinking about those things, whether it be a house, a car, furniture, investment portfolios, computers, our wardrobes, or whatever. And many people become slaves to consumerism and greed. Therefore we need to deal with these issues and have a biblical viewpoint concerning the many material comforts we have.

Above all, if we want the same perspective on wealth that Jesus had, our view must far exceed that of the Pharisees with their proud, earthbound viewpoint. They were focusing all of their time and devotion on selfishly laying up worldly treasures. Theirs is not the godly standard of those who want to exemplify Christ in the midst of a materialistic society.

by John MacArthur


The Active Kind Of Holy

Jonathan Cahnby Jonathan Cahn

The Pharisees had a problem with Messiah going to the house of Matthew. The word Pharisee comes from the Hebrew word kedoshim, which means separated ones. Their holiness was about staying separate from the unholy. There are two kinds of holiness. One that stays away from the unholy, and the other kind that cleanses the unclean and makes it clean. Messiah’s holiness touches the unholy and makes it holy. He came to earth to touch the sick- the lepers, the untouchables- and heal them. Many religious people are scared of touching the unholy because they’re afraid they will become unholy as well. Messiah’s holiness is so great that It’s not content to leave evil alone, or let the dark stay, but to shine the light in the dark and make the darkness light. It’s so holy that It makes everything around become holy. That’s what It’s about. So have nothing to do with sin, keeping your heart free of the slightest trace of sin, but have everything to do with the unholy people, the lost and unsaved, because the truly holy do not fear the dark- they light it up.

Today’s Mission – Don’t fear the dark today. Instead, illuminate it, touch it, overwhelm it, share the Gospel with it, and transform it with the presence of God.

by Jonathan Cahn