When Moses looked upon that bush that burned but was not consumed and entered into the presence of Almighty God he was so awe struck with the power, splendor, and majesty of I AM that he did not even eat or drink anything for 40 days. It was the Glory of the Lord that rested on Mount Sinai and it was the presence of God’s Glory that filled Moses and sustained him. When Moses descended from the Mountain his faced was shining like that of a lamp because that is what being in the presence of God the Father will do to and for any person. Moses probably could have never dreamed that he would break those stone tablets that he walked down the Mountain with that contained the Ten Commandments but when he looked upon the people worshipping before a golden calf that they had made the Scriptures says, “So Moses’ anger became hot, and he cast the tablets out of his hands and broke them at the foot of the mountain.”
Ezekiel 33:31 So they come to you as people do, they sit before you as My people, and they hear your words, but they do not do them; for with their mouth they show much love, but their hearts pursue their own gain. NKJV
The words of Moses’ brother Aaron (who facilitated over the rebellion) were on point then and they reverberated for the many centuries forward to the time of our Lord Jesus and even up to present day Jews and Aaron said, “You know the people that they are set on evil.” Even with all that Moses witnessed over the period of the 40 years in the wilderness with the people of Israel, he still could not have imagined the additional 600 some man-made rules, regulations, and rituals that the Jewish Rabbis would ordain over the centuries. Because of the many man-made traditions established, the actual Ten Commandments had almost become an after-thought and even the traditions were being held in as high regard as the Word of God.
Colossians 2:21-23 “Do not touch, do not taste, do not handle,” which all concern things which perish with the using --- according to the commandments and doctrines of men? These things indeed have an appearance of wisdom in self-imposed religion, false humility, and neglect of the body, but are of no value against the indulgence of the flesh. NKJV
Titus 1:14 “Not giving heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men who turn from the truth” NKJV
1 Peter 1:18 “Knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers” NKJV
Our Lord enters into the land of Jerusalem with the 12 disciples and they purposefully ignore the religious traditions but cling to the Word of God from the Pentateuch and the Word being taught to them every day by the Lord Jesus Christ. Of course everywhere our Lord Jesus and the disciples went this immediately provoked a response of complaint from the Scribes and the Pharisees. These men were so religious (yet without any love to God) and concerned with their outward show of piety that they were particular of how they washed their hands before eating a meal. It was some tradition handed down by Elders of old that required them to wash in a special way as if this would endear one to the heart of God.
Matthew 23:1-3 Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to His disciples, saying: “The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat. Therefore whatever they tell you to observe, that observe and do, but do not do according to their works; for they say, and do not do.” NKJV
Isaiah 1:13-14 Bring no more futile sacrifices; Incense is an abomination to Me. The New Moons, the Sabbaths, and the calling of assemblies --- I cannot endure iniquity and the sacred meeting. Your New Moons and your appointed feasts My soul hates; They are a trouble to Me, I am weary of bearing them. NKJV
God the Father never intended for His Word given to Moses to end up with man-made rules of washing hands, washing cups, washing pitchers, washing copper vessels, and washing couches to be elevated to equal status with His eternal Word. This was bad enough but in doing these ridicules man-made things for so many years they had made the Word of God to be of no effect in their daily lives and this is what made them hypocrites because they had no power in their lives to live a life pleasing to God (see the article entitled “Making the Word of God of No Effect”, http://www.faithwriters.com/article-details.php?id=90554 ). The irony of these traditions of washing your hands a certain way and the others were picked up and are practiced by some later religions like Islam and Hinduism. Israel was to be a light to the Gentile world to point them to YAHWEH the One and Only God and instead they became a stumbling block. Israel failed at their responsibility of leading the Gentile world to God by compromising with the Gentile practices and false belief systems.
Isaiah 49:6 Indeed He says, “It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant To raise up the tribes of Jacob, And to restore the preserved ones of Israel; I will also give You as a light to the Gentiles, That You should be My salvation to the ends of the earth.” NKJV
Our Lord Jesus has come to His own people the Jews and they have refused Him. He is to the religious leaders not the True Messiah, so they follow Him everywhere and find fault with Him and His disciples about things that are insignificant and have no eternal value or ability to rescue those that are perishing in sin. These men by their religion have bolted the door shut to salvation from those Jews that sincerely desired to enter in and have communion with YAHWEH. This is why our Lord has come to replace Israel who failed to be the light YAHWEH had called them to be. Our Lord has come to condemn and do away with their religious traditions and fulfill all of the Law of Moses and the Prophets by His death, burial, and resurrection from the dead and make a way for every heart that is poor in spirit, filled with godly sorrow over their sin, and hungering and thirsting for righteousness to receive from Him new life/resurrection life. He offers it to the Jew first and then to the Gentiles.
Luke 2:32 A light to bring revelation to the Gentiles, And the glory of Your people Israel. NKJV
“One hundred religious persons knit into a unity by careful organizations do not constitute a church any more than eleven dead men make a football team. The first requisite is life, always.” A. W. Tozer 1897-1963
“Of all bad men religious bad men are the worst.” “For whatever else the religious life may be, it is the fountain of self-knowledge and disillusion, the safest form of psychoanalysis.” C. S. Lewis 1898-1963
“It is a terribly easy matter to be a minister of the gospel and a vile hypocrite at the same time.” Charles Spurgeon 1834-1892
“Temptations are never so dangerous as when they come to us in a religious garb.” D. L. Moody 1837-1899
“I declare I know of no state of soul more dangerous than to imagine we are born again and sanctified by the Holy Ghost, because we have picked up a few religious feelings.” J. C. Ryle 1816-1900
“If ever a monk could get to Heaven through monastic discipline, I was that monk. And yet my conscience would not give me certainty, but I always doubted and said, ‘You didn't do that right. You weren’t contrite enough. You left that out of your confession.’ The more I tried to remedy an uncertain, weak, and troubled conscience with human traditions, the more I daily found it more uncertain, weaker, and more troubled.” Martin Luther 1483-1546
If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ and His amazing healing power, pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him), Dear Lord Jesus, I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...
Sincerely in Christ,
Clifford D. Tate, Sr.
Author of “Silent Assassins of the Soul - Are you Broken by Pornography and Masturbation? You can be Restored by the Lord Jesus Christ and brought into Deliverance, Freedom, and Victory! A Guide for Men and Women in the Enemy’s Crosshairs” e-book available now @ Amazon Kindle, @ Apple I Bookstore for IPod, Barnes and Noble for Nook, Reader Store for Sony Reader, Kobo, Copia, Gardners, Baker and Taylor, and eBookPie…