“But all their works they do to be seen by men. They make their phylacteries broad and enlarge the borders of their garments.” - Matthew 23:5
The word from Jesus today is one of warning against hypocrisy. The example set by religious leaders of His day was one to be seen and heard by others. Their works were done to draw attention to themselves and to show off their so-called piety to others. Their religious practices were extreme and exaggerated, all with the purpose of exalting themselves. It was a boastful attitude of self-righteousness; “look at me, look how good and righteous I am, I am fulfilling all the requirements of the law”. It was all an attempt to show off to others how good they were.
Listen to Jesus today and take note of the fact that He looks at the heart “for as a man thinks in his heart so is he”. Make sure that what you do is not just to be seen by others and to receive the praises of others. Are you a man pleaser or a God pleaser? Why am I doing what I do? Is it merely to draw attention to myself and does it show how religious I am or does it bring praise to the Lord Jesus Christ? Just professing Christianity is not enough to merit eternal life and a place in heaven.
There must be a change of heart that will show itself in a life style that exemplifies the power of the Lord Jesus Christ. “For if any man is in Christ he is a new creature, old things have passed away and all things have become new.”
Dear Father in heaven hallowed be Your name, may Your kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven. May Your life of purity and holiness be seen in me today and may my works show forth Your love and goodness, in Jesus’ Name.