Righteousness of Pharisees.
by Fakeye Hezekiah Olufemi
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There lived a very valiant and popular, but deaf man is a certain village. One faithful morning, I saw this deaf man from a far with a radio in his hands. I was surprised what a deaf man could be doing with radio, and so I moved close to him to inquire from him via hand gesture what he was doing with a radio. The man replied, I bought it so as to listen to news, and moreover, to dance to music that will be played on it. That's shocking anyway.
Thereafter, this man became aquinted with his radio so much that he takes it to everywhere he goes; even to toilet and bathroom.
One day, he took his radio and went to the village's T jucntion, he put on the power on the radio, increased the volume on the radio set to the highest volume possible and began to dance. What a fortunate day for this man! his dancing steps were in accord with the rhythm of the music played. As people were passing by, they were astonished, and were making comments. As this man noticed that people around him were talking, he taught they were greeting him, and then he raised his voice and said, 'God bless you, thank you very much'. This reply was surprising, and they all concluded that this man is no more deaf.
On an unfortunate day however, this deaf man dressed up as he wants to visit a court. He switched on the power on his radio while on his way without noticing that the power is still off. As he got to the court, he intended switching the power off but switched it on instead, and there was great distraction in the court. The judge ordered the man to switch off his radio, but as the man noticed the judge was talking, he taught he was greeting him, and then he raised his voice and said 'God bless you and thank you very much', but he did nothing as regards the order. This infuriated the judge, and prompted him to order the torture of this man. The rest of the story is unpalatable.
One of the greatest challenges I have with the present day Christianity is hypocrisy. Many believers are full of pretence and are not what they present themselves to be. This has been hindering the smooth spreading of the gospel because preachers are not doing what they preach.
Hypocrisy has gained so much ground that we now have an exorbitant percent of deceivers compared to that of believers. Deceivers are fast replacing believers in the Christiandom. Even the so called ministers of God and workers in the vine yard are full of pretence.
In the parable I gave earlier on, the deaf man represents you as a Christian, and the radio is the Bible you carry. Truly, the whole world are convinced that you are actually a believer, because you've turned the Bible into an handbag as you take it to everywhere possible. You even have all the versions both on paper and as an application on your mobile devices. And whenever you are being greeted, your response is always 'God bless you' or 'You are blessed', but yet you do not in anyway understand the Bible you carry neither do you do and follow the precepts therein. You are a deaf man who listens to radio; an hypocrite! You are among the Pharisees of this generation. Do you know what Jesus said about the Pharisees?
27 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within they are full of dead men's bones and all uncleanness. 28 So you also appear righteous to men, but within you are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
Jesus said woe to hypocrites. That's a curse!
I heard the story of a man of God who was found of protecting himself with charms, yet this man will mount the pulpit and instruct people to depend solely on God for protection; hypocrisy!
How could we be preaching diligency when we ourselves are not diligent? How could we be preaching rightouesness and holiness when we ourselves are riotous and unholy? How could we be imploring people to have faith in God when our faith is actually attached to something else? Why the messages of love when we ourselves are full of hatred for others? We preach meekness when wickedness reigns in our own heart. Hypocrisy at the highest order! Truly, we read the Bible everyday, but the teachings therein do not reflect in our lives; and then we condemn unbelievers for not following God's way.
This is nothing but hypocrisy; and it must stop if we must have any chance of entering the kingdom of God.
For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of God.
One thing the scribes and Pharisees were known for is hypocrisy. All their righteousness is hypocrisy. They pretend a lot and were full of eye service. They teach what they don't do and do what they don't teach. According to Jesus, this people have no place in the kingdom of God. They are candidates of hell! He said, except your righteousness exceeds this type of righteousness, you will not, under any circumstances, enter the kingdom of God. It's as simple as that!
Our teachings and what we profess must reflect in our lives too. Whatever message we are passing across to unbelievers, we must be the case study; the reference point. If we preach holiness, let us be holy ourselves. I see many men of God charging their congregation to give their properties, money and everything to God in order to evoke divine blessings while they are holding tight to their own belongings. Abba! If you are sure it works that way, you should be the first to give to God! Don't you want divine blessings too? If we preach love, we must be the first to show that love genuinely. God is not interested in the speaker of the word but the doer of the word. Christianity is not theoretical neither is it a thing of mouth, but an act. It is pure practical! It's not a dramma but a life experience.
The Bible says in Matthew 5:16 that;
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
You don't have to teach the good works alone, those good works must be seen in you too. People are no more interested in hearing the pure and raw messages alone, they want to see it reflect in our lives too. There is power in seeing! Seeing is believing. If you want them to believe, act it for them. Let them see it in your character.
1Peter 2:12 says;
Maintain good conduct among the Gentiles, so that in case they speak against you as wrongdoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.
What that implies is that your action speaks louder than your voice. It is your good deeds that will make unbelievers turn to God. Look at the verse 15 of that same chapter, it says;
For it is God's will that by doing right you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish men.
Thus, it is not actually what you preach or speak that actually put away the ignorance of the foolish, but your act of doing what is right. In other words, you might have been preaching the right message and saying the right words, it will not change anything until you put those right things in action.
I beseach you therefore brethren; it is high time we moved away from the Christianity of mouth and of dramma to Christianity of character. It's time to shun hypocrisy in our Christian life as it leads only to hell. If you are one of the Pharisees of this generation, this is a call to repentance and to change your ways. God have no business with hypocrites; He will never consider them for His kingdom. Thus, turn away from your hypocrisy. Choose whom you want to serve today and be steadfast; if it be God or Mammon.
Remember this word will also stand as a body against you on the last day as a witness.
God bless you!
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Be in anticipation of my book titled "THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE WORD OF GOD TO CHRISTIANITY".
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