Wednesday, March 2, 2011
Read Matthew 3:110
“Produce fruit in keeping with repentance.” Matthew 3:8
John the Baptist preaches to the Pharisees and the Sadducees. He calls them ‘a brood of vipers’, a very critical phrase. The Pharisees stayed away from those who non-Jewish. The Sadducees only believed in the first five books of God’s Word. These two groups were always at odds with each other. But they both opposed Jesus.
Earlier in this passage, John tells his hearers to “Repent, for the kingdom of God is near.” To repent means to change behavior.
We know neither group followed John’s direction. The two groups interfered with Jesus’ ministry at every turn.
How does John’s message apply to us in the 21st Century? When we come to Christ, we are all eager to do what God tells us. A little while later, things get hard and we begin to let our old selves take over. We get confused in what we are to do. Basically we take our eyes off Jesus and believe we can live our lives the way we want.
But we can’t. When we ask Jesus to live in our hearts, we turn over control of our lives to Him. We have to do this every day. God wants us to ask each day what it is He has for us to do and how He wants us to act.
Our actions, as well as our reactions, are supposed to honor Christ. We can no longer let things slide by, we have to align our behavior, as well as our hearts, with what would honor Him