Mike’s Musings …

Saying and Doing Not

   “All therefore whatsoever they [Pharisees] bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their [Pharisees] works: for they [Pharisees] say, and do not.” (Matthew 23:3) I’ve emphasized “Pharisees” for a reason. They were quite legalistic in their demands, but for themselves, they often did much less! Jesus further described the hypocritical ways of the Pharisees by continuing, “For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers. But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.” Put simply, they desired to be noticed – and once noticed they had received their reward! (Matthew 6: 1- 16)

   Within our personal objectives, we often do the same. For example, I’ve often said, “I’m going to get my home office better organized.” That hasn’t happened yet, except minimally. The same is about repairing my old Wheel Horse tractor. But such things have nothing to do with serving God. The Pharisees had set their regulations upon others in a pretense of ordering more “holiness” in life but refused to follow their own orders! Likewise, some Christians “talk a good life” but have yet to show it by their example of living!

   Others, who admittedly do several righteous things, do them only to be noticed; and if you didn’t notice, they are apt to ask, “Did you see … did you get … do you know what I did?” They’ve lost their blessing for whatever good they have done, for they’ve changed it into a “work to be seen of men” rather than a work of love noticed by God (Hebrews 6:10).

   I muse on the many who say, “I’m going to do this or that,” and that’s all you hear of it: you later SEE or HEAR the results of their labors without them bringing attention to that accomplishment. Well done, souls! I also muse on those who seemingly just can’t seem to do much without asking for praise. To them, Solomon would say, “Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own lips.” (Proverbs 27:2)

   Yes, we need those who will say and do … but we don’t need anyone bragging about it!