What Jesus Did! 'Greater Punishment' — Luke 20:45-47

Sunday, November 22, 2015

All the people listened to Jesus. Jesus said to his followers, "Be careful of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around wearing clothes that look important. And they love for people to show respect to them in the market places. They love to get the most important seats in the synagogues. And they love to get the most important seats at the feasts. But they are mean to widows and steal their homes. Then they try to make themselves look good by saying long prayers. God will punish these people very much."
— Luke 20:45-47 NLT
Illustration of Luke 20:45-47 NLT — "Be careful of the teachers of the law."

Key Thought

Three great sins are pronounced upon the religious leaders of Jesus' day: first, they are pretentious, loving to be recognized as important religious people; second, they cheat the helpless in society they are supposed to protect; and, third, they are hypocrites and try to cover this hypocrisy by seeming to be pious. Those of us who are so invested in living our faith passionately need to know that God is pleased with our passion. However, our Heavenly Father does not want us to make a big show of our religious zeal, especially when we find ways to justify living in contradiction to his revealed will for us in Scripture.

Today's Prayer

Father, may I never ever again be guilty of the Pharisees' sins! Forgive me, dear God, for those times when I've wanted to appear religious, but lived my life in hypocrisy and sin. Through your blessed and powerful Holy Spirit, conform me to be more like your Son each day. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Proverbs 6:16-19
  • James 1:27
  • Amos 5:21-24

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.