Daily Devotional - "Through the Eyes of a Cop"
Briefing: "Forget everything you learned in the academy. I'm going to teach you to be a real cop". These were the famous words of my first Field Training Officer (FTO). My second phase FTO told me, "I'm going to teach you the right way to do things, then we are going to do them my way".
Dispatch (Assignment): Look up the definition of hypocrite. Read Matthew 23.
On the Street: Jesus has saved us from the law by making the ultimate sacrifice for us so we are no longer under the penalty of law. The law always requires sacrifice, paying the penalty, when it is broken. Even today, when you get caught speeding you have to pay the penalty. Jesus came along and made it so that we never have to pay for our spiritual violations. That does not mean He wants us to go around breaking the law. We are still required to keep the law and set a good example for others.
In what areas of your life are you guilty of being hypocritical? The best policy is to be an open book that is truthful. It may be ugly but at least it is the truth. I would rather be truthful than be deceptive and live a lie. The Bible is black and white with no room for gray. You either live the truth or live a lie. In Revelation 3:15, Jesus tells us to either be hot or cold for the Lord. He hates lukewarm and He will vomit the lukewarm people out of His mouth.
Highlights from this Read: How easy is it for people who rise to positions of leadership to forget where they came from? They seem to hold people under them to a much higher standard than they ever achieved. They lose compassion and mercy. The Pharisees fall into this type of leadership style.
Jesus continues to stress that the people follow their earthly authority. If I were to start my own company, I would want to hire people who would follow my instructions, respect my authority and have a great work ethic. Jesus also wants this. He is always teaching people to live by these virtues and to develop these characteristics.
In verse 19, we see a picture of Jesus leading the people by the hand. They are blind to His teaching. Isaiah 2:3 says, "He will teach us His ways, so that we may walk in His paths". Isaiah 26:7-8 says, "The path of the righteous is level; O upright One, you make the way of the righteous smooth. Yes, Lord, walking in the way of your laws, we wait for you; your name and renown are the desire of our hearts".
Jesus tells us to swear by nothing, just tell the truth (Matthew 5:37). Read verse 37 and compare it to the parable of the vineyard.
Be a God pleaser, not a man pleaser. See Galatians 1:10.
Investigational Resources: For other gospel accounts, see Mark 12:38-39, Luke 13:34-35 and Luke 20:45-46. Look back at Matthew 12:38-39; Pharisees asking Jesus for a sign. For insight on why the Pharisees, Sadducees, chief priests and elders of Israel could not see who Jesus was or hear the truth that came from His words, see Isaiah 6:9.
Officer Safety Principle: Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Imitate Jesus.
from The Gospel of Matthew Through the Eyes of a Cop
©2012 by Charles Gilliland. Used by permission.
6:30 p.m. | Chattanooga, TN
7:00 p.m. | Doral, FL
6:30 p.m. | Chattanooga, TN