Responding To The Challenge

Sometimes we think of Jesus as being one who was meek, kind, loving, always soft, always gentle.  These attributes of Him are correct, however He was also one who would not hesitate to speak the truth or to challenge the inconsistencies of those who thought they were above reproach.  It would have been easy for Jesus to have verbally torn apart every individual, exposed their sins and weaknesses, for we all have sins and weaknesses.    As Jesus ministered among the people, He came as one who would not break off a bruised reed nor snuff out a smoking flame.  To the wounded, struggling and sincere He brought hope acceptance and mercy.
However as Jesus was challenged by the arrogant, the self-righteous, the condemning or the judgmental nature of others, He was quick to respond, not with soft words but with the truth that exposed the inconsistency and hypocrisy of His accusers.  In Matthew 15:2 the scribes and Pharisees try to find fault with Jesus’ followers, they accusingly ask why His disciples fail to keep the traditions of the elders by not washing their hands before eating.  Jesus responds by asking an even sharper question of why they don’t keep the commandments of God because of their following of traditions.
The Pharisees made up excuses for their actions, justifying why they did not need to keep the commandments of our Lord.  God is not looking for excuses, He looks for obedience.  Ask God to show you areas in your heart where you are softly making excuses for why you don’t need to obey Him.  Then make a change and start to quickly respond in obedience to Him.
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