“A curse is on you, Pharisees! To the Temple you give a tenth of all, including mint and rue and the other herbs, but you neglect justice and the love of God. These ought to be practiced, without neglecting the other obligations. A curse is on you, Pharisees, for you love the best seats in the synagogues and to be greeted in the marketplace. A curse is on you for you are like tombstones of the dead which can hardly be seen; people don’t notice them and make themselves unclean by stepping on them.”
Then a teacher of the Law spoke up and said, “Master, when you speak like this, you insult us, too.” And Jesus answered, “A curse is on you also, teachers of the Law. For you prepare unbearable burdens and load them on the people, while you yourselves don’t move a finger to help them.“
The Gospel of today completes the Gospel of yesterday.
We all have known persons with this scrupulous style of doing. On the one hand, they don’t forget any detail of the abundant Jewish traditions. On the other, as Jesus says, they neglect justice and love. But Jesus claims both details and attitudes.
But there is another secret pleasance in the Pharisee souls: to take the best seats in the synagogues and to be greeted in the marketplace. Jesus often points out this lack of humility on the part of these pious Jewish. Their true heart abides hidden within, but expands with spiritual corruption.
The reproach to the teachers of the Law is similar. Truly, they don’t share the burden of the Law with the simple people.
The spirit of the Pharisees and Rabbis is however so widespread. I guess these are the classical temptations of ministers and religious communities. More than the water at our hands, the words of Jesus in our hearts purify our consciences and practices.
CLARETIAN COMMUNICATIONS FOUNDATION, INC.
8 Mayumi Street, U.P. Village, Diliman, 1101 Quezon City, Philippines
Tel.: (02) 921-3984 • 922-00-11 • 921-28-59 Fax: (02) 921-6205, 927-7429
Bookstore: (02) 924-6835
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com