Tuesday 29 August 2017
The Beheading of St John the Baptist.
1 Thessalonians 2:1-8. Psalm 138(139):1-3, 4-6. Matthew 23:23-26.
You have searched me and you know me, Lord — Psalm 138(139):1-3, 4-6.
‘You blind Pharisee!’
When we have pondered the hatefulness of what Jesus charges the Pharisees with, it is embarrassing to realise he might turn his accusations against us. He denounces two forms of insincerity. The Pharisees do little things to escape from doing big things.
They are scrupulous in observing minor points of law: they think nothing of offending God in serious matters.
We may find ourselves among those, for example, who are never impolite but often unkind.
Jesus accuses the Pharisees of keeping rules without thought of the values that the rules protect or enforce. We can make our own list of laws that we might keep to the letter but practice without their spirit.