Bill Onisick, characterizing the Pharisees as separatists, meticulously following man-made rituals and traditions, but oblivious of the weightier matters of the law, examines the deadly leavening of a Pharisee. The Pharisees performed their roles like actors behind mask, wanting the approval of men by his role-playing of piety. …
The Pharisees were in the office or seat of Moses. Jesus taught His followers to follow their words (pertaining to the Law of God), but not their personal examples.
Richard Ritenbaugh analyzes Jesus unambiguous, scathing indictment of the Pharisees in Matthew 23. Using abundant sarcasm, Jesus accuses them of presumptuously arrogating to themselves authority and prerogatives they had no title to. Although the Pharisees imposed harsh regulations on "the blind" or …
Richard Ritenbaugh continues his exposition on the Pharisees, a group seemingly starting off on the right track under Ezra, but getting hopelessly sidetracked over the years, ultimately placing impossible burdens on the people they supposedly served. These zealous dedicated legalists elevated the traditions of man (and their …
Having their origin in the days of Ezra, the Scribes and Pharisees were extremely zealous for the law, separating themselves for this exclusive purpose.
Jesus warned of three varieties of leaven that we must guard against, staying aware of the pitfalls that will pull us down and corrupt us.
Self-righteousness is defined as being smugly proud of one's own opinion and intolerant of others. What Job repented of was his misunderstanding of God.
Jesus blasts the scribes and Pharisees in Matthew 23, telling them they ignore the 'weightier matters.' We must focus on certain virtues as we keep God's law.
The Jews establishes a fixed date for Shavuot in contradiction to the instruction for counting to Pentecost. This is part of the leavening of the Pharisees.
Bill Onisick, warning us that we are continually in danger of being deceived by our hearts and carnal nature, a nature which distracts us from following God, though we go through the motions, cautions us to not practice hypocrisy before Almighty God. Most have deluded themselves into thinking their ways are pure and acceptable …
God's forgiveness of us is directly tied to our forgiveness of those who have sinned against us! We must reciprocate God's forgiveness by forgiving others.
The problem with the Pharisees is that they never grasped the simplicity of the law, much less the spirit of it, but dissected it to be thought righteous.
Martin Collins, reminding us that as God's people we should stand out in contrast from the world, mentions that we can sometimes find ourselves assailed by doubts, fears, and lack of joy. When we find ourselves in a state of misery, we need to understand the causes for this lack of joy. Second- and third-generation Christians …
Faith and fidelity to God and His way of life should be a major part of our character. Here is what faith and fidelity are, how to recognize a lack of them.
President Obama endorsed the mosque at Ground Zero, pleading tolerance. Yet God is a jealous God, ordering the extermination of all competing religions.
Richard Ritenbaugh introduces his topic of covering sins by reflecting on the illegal trial of Jesus, in which false witnesses and false accusations were trumped up by the presumptuous Jewish religious leaders against the very Son of God. The Pharisees and Sadducees demonstrated hypocrisy, professing righteousness and teaching …
People knew not to put new wine in old wineskins or a new cloth patch on an old shirt. Likewise, Jesus' new way of life is incompatible with old habits and beliefs!
In Galatians, Paul took issue with the Halakhah, not God's word. Halakhah was a massive collection of human opinion that placed a yoke on its followers.
John Ritenbaugh, acknowledging that Mitt Romney will be the standard-bearer of the Republican Party, suggests that Romney, of all the candidates, is perhaps closer to the current President's views than any of the others. Nevertheless, the leftist Democrat propaganda machine, headed by militant feminist Hillary Rosen, has …
Jesus lists judgment as the first of the weightier matters in Matthew 23. Judgment is a major part of Christianity, but needs to be properly understood.
It is common to focus on what the King gives and does, at the expense of what the King desires and requires, emphasizing God's grace over obligation.
John Ritenbaugh, continuing his appraisal of humanism as an alternative to religion, suggests that humanism pervades the entire spectrum of the arts and the sciences, as well as theology. Because this world's educational system is so immersed in humanism, people are unaware of the depths of their entrapment, and that they are …
Jesus deliberately heals a man with dropsy on the Sabbath. He was teaching the people an unmistakable lesson about the purpose of the Sabbath day.
John Ritenbaugh, continuing his exposé on liberalism and education, reminds us that conservatism carried to an extreme is every bit as dangerous as liberalism. Both the Sadducees and the Pharisees were enemies of Jesus Christ. Power, whoever possesses it, has the tendency to corrupt absolutely. Using the principle of …
In the gray areas of applying God's Law, extending mercy and easing of burdens trumps legalism and hairsplitting.
Many have a love-hate relationship with mercy: They love to receive it, but hate to give it! Here is why we should lean toward mercy in all our judgments.
Bill Onisick, focusing on the concept of the bread of affliction in Deuteronomy 16:3, admonishes us that the unleavened bread we consume consists of purity without hypocrisy, similar to a perfect gem held up to the sunlight. We have been de-leavened, but we know we still have sin in us that has to be purified through a lengthy …
The Parable of the Cloth and the Wineskins concludes a much longer narrative. The context and reveals deeper meanings and applications of the parable.
The Pharisees were missing a sense of proportion, avoiding sin, but not lightening the burdens of their flocks by applying justice, mercy, and faith.
The people suffering under the Babylonians had basked in the privilege of being God's chosen people while also trashing the terms of the Covenant.
Many 'church of God' organizations claim to be part of—or even the only—church of God. The Bible reveals specific characteristics of God's church.
The effectiveness of a law is found in its purpose and intent rather than the letter. Love and mercy constitute the spiritual fulfillment of the Law.
We face the same kind of pressures and stress that Timothy faced, with perilous times ahead of us, threatening the existence of the nation and the church.
Paul established his identity and credentials as a Jew in order to build a foundation from which to provide a logical defense of his 'apostasy'.