Luke 20:46 Doing For Show

“Beware of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around in flowing robes and love to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces and have the most important seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at banquets.” Luke 20:46

Jesus gave out a warning of a group of people. These people would look very good and even sound very good, but were much different on the inside. They were the teachers of the law. These were the important, high level religious people of the temple in those days. The teachers of the law were being accused by Jesus of trying to make a great big show of themselves.

People can still be like that today. There are some people who will dress up in very nice suits or dresses when they go to church. While in a church service, these people will pray very beautiful and long prayers. They may even sit towards the front of the church.

Yet, at their home, they never pray or read the Bible and are doing very sinful things. They are rude to their family. They look down upon any person who is not “looking good” to them in the public places. They refuse to help those in need.

This type of people are doing things just for a show. They want to look good. They want to appear to be great Christian men and women. Yet, they are living a lie.

Jesus says to watch out for those people. They may speak a good word in the church service or Sunday School classroom, but their lives are not matching. Do not allow yourself to be deceived by them.

Along with not being deceived by them, you must also not be one of them. Why do you do the things that you do? Is it for a show? Are you doing things to look good to other people?

Everything you do must be done to bring God glory and praise. It must not be done to bring yourself praise. Live the life that Jesus did, because that is who God has made you. Don’t do it just to look like Jesus, to look good. Don’t look for the praise of the people. Remember, God looks at the heart, not just the outward actions.

I pray today that God will reveal your heart to you; that God will give you strength to change where needed; that you will not do things for a show; that you will not be deceived by others; and that God will use you to build His kingdom.

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Luke 20:2 Questioning Authority

“Tell us by what authority you are doing these things, they said. Who gave you this authority?” Luke 20:2

While Jesus was teaching the people, various leaders came up to Him questioning Him. They wanted to know how He had the authority or right to speak as He did.

Jesus had been speaking like someone in control. He was not an elected official, nor did He have a titled position in the community.

This type of questioning has not stopped over the years. People in the world are questioning Christians all the time. Christians are accused of being very closed-minded. True Christians believe that Jesus is the only way to get into heaven. The world does not like that idea. That means that they are wrong in what they believe.

As believer take a stand against sinful lifestyles, many are questioning them on whose authority that they can make these statements. Often they will be accused of hating people because of their stand against sin.

In America, the government makes rules allowing all kinds of sinful lifestyles to be lived freely. Believers will often teach against these lifestyles. The world does not see, nor accept their authority. The authority of all believers comes from God Himself.

Jesus had a standard that was perfect and holy. Men must work at trying to live with that standard. No man will ever attain that level, except through Jesus. Despite not attaining, it the level must be aimed for. It must be taught.

You must be willing to stand on God’s Word for your authority. In yourself, you have no authority of any value, but in Jesus you are a leader in this world. The world will not want to recognize it, but it is still there.

Are you living up to the standard God has set? Are you telling others about that standard God has set? Do not allow the world to intimidate you into being quiet. You have God’s authority to teach His word to all the world. Some will accept it, while others will reject it. Do not let that deter you in any way.

I pray today that God will reveal His word to you; that God will give you His wisdom in what to say and when to say it; that you will know the authority God has given you; that you will speak in His love; and that you will be His witness.

Luke 19:47-48 Hanging Onto His Words

“Every day he was teaching at the temple. But the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the leaders among the people were trying to kill him. Yet they could not find any way to do it, because all the people hung on his words.” Luke 19:47-48

Jesus had been teaching every day, everywhere He went. His teaching was not to just please everyone. The leaders of the people and the leaders in the temple did not like Jesus. His teachings tore apart their traditions and exposed their falsehood. They wanted to get rid of Him, but were unable to do so.

The teachings of Jesus, to this day, will still make some people upset. He taught that a sinful lifestyle will send a person to hell. Now, leaders are trying to say that it is a hate crime to speak out against a sinful lifestyle. It does not matter that a person may speak it in love for the person, it is still against the way of the world.

Many people want to get rid of Christianity. It makes them uncomfortable. It goes against their traditions and ways.

In this passage, the leaders could not get rid of Jesus because all of the people hung on to His words. They had believed Jesus and followed Him.

Today people will try to quiet Christians down and get rid of Jesus. Every believer must be willing to hold on to His words. You must proclaim the words of Jesus boldly and without fear.

As you speak the teachings of Jesus to others, you keep His words alive in this world. You spread His words and more people will believe in Him.

Satan and the world cannot get rid of Jesus when more and more people are following Him. Do not let the world scare you and force you to be quiet. Do not let the world get rid of Jesus. He is the way, the truth and the life and the world needs to know it.

Hang on to the words of Jesus. Hide them in your heart…memorize them. Study them. Know them. Do not move away from them. This will keep Jesus alive in your life and in this world.

I pray today that you will hold on to the words of Jesus; that God will fill you with His boldness to proclaim His words; that God will remove all fear in your life; and that Jesus will be more real to you each day.

Luke 20:25 Solving a Tax Problem

“He said to them, Then give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.” Luke 20:25

The leaders of the temple did not give up on trying to catch Jesus in something wrong. This time they sent some others to try to trap Him. The famous question of whether it is right to pay taxes to a worldly government or not was brought up. Jesus gives a very simple answer in that you are to give Caesar what is his, and to God what is His.

Looking at that time frame and what Caesar represented gives you a picture of why this question might be asked. Caesar was the leader of the dreaded Roman Empire. They controlled all of Israel, God’s chosen people. He did not fear or follow God in any way.

Today, with the majority, if not all, of the countries in the world, they are run by people in a government that does not serve or follow God. They do not lead the countries with a fear of God.

In America, many Christians do not want to pay taxes because the government uses that money for sinful lifestyle promotions. Others don’t want to pay because they feel it is an infringement on their freedom.

As a believer you must look at it from God’s point of view. Who in reality owns everything and has a right to it? God is the one who owns everything. He allows people to use His stuff to live on this earth.

You, as a believer in Jesus, do not really own anything. You are just a steward of what God has blessed you with.

From the world’s point of view, and God’s, you must give others what is theirs. Jesus stated that you must give the world what is the world’s. Do not be afraid to pay the tax. God will provide more abundantly for you than the government can. God can also use that tax money for His benefit if He chooses to do so.

In America, people love their freedom and their rights. As a Christian, you are a slave to God and have no rights. As a Christian you are a citizen of a different world. Give to Caesar what he wants. God will take care of you.

I pray today that God will reveal His power over the world to you; that you will trust God for all of your provision; that you will not be afraid of the world; and that God will give you the strength to be His witness.

Luke 19:41-42 Last Chances

“As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it and said, If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace–but now it is hidden from your eyes.” Luke 19:41-42

Jesus was riding into Jerusalem and the people were giving Him a lot of great praise and honor. As good as everything looked on the surface, Jesus saw the inside of the hearts of the people. He started weeping because He knew that they were not really honoring Him with their full hearts. He makes the statement that they did not really know what would bring them peace.

The people thought that Jesus would be the new king who would bring them peace from their enemy, the Romans. Although Jesus would be their king, it was not to destroy the Romans. The peace that Jesus was bringing was a peace with God.

Many people thought that they were God’s chosen people. They felt they were at peace with God. Very few had really heard the scriptures and realized that they needed someone to take away their sins. Jesus now states that the peace that He was bringing would be hidden from their eyes.

Although times have changed, people have not. The majority of the people in this world, still do not see the peace that Jesus can bring into their lives. They are looking for world peace in the fighting. Others are looking to things and bank accounts for their peace.

Even many Christians struggle with this. They feel they must do more and more work for God to be accepted by God. They continually condemn themselves for sins done years ago. They do not have true peace, because they are not fully trusting in Jesus.

Today is the day to focus on what Jesus has done for you and is willing to do for you. He has taken away past sins and will continue to do so. He is willing to fill your life with His peace.

You must trust in Him and in Him alone. Do not allow the day to pass without trusting in His peace. Do not allow the work He is able to do be hidden from your eyes. God is giving you a chance to trust Him today…take it. Don’t run from it. There will come a day when you will no longer be able to see Jesus.

I pray today that God will reveal His love and peace to you; that you will accept Jesus as your Lord and King; that you will trust Jesus for everything; that you will not turn away from Jesus; and that God will build you up in Jesus.

Luke 19:38 Giving Praise

“Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” Luke 19:38

As Jesus comes riding into Jerusalem the people start shouting praises to Him. They are calling Him their king.

When Jesus rode into Jerusalem, He was riding a colt of a donkey. This is not an animal that is connected to royalty. When kings would ride into their city, they always road on majestic horses or in a carriage, not a donkey, and a baby one at that.

Along with the riding a colt, Jesus never stated that He was their king. He never grabbed at being the king. Jesus just did what His Father wanted Him to do.

The people had been looking for a king of their own. They had been under the harsh Roman rule for many years and wanted their freedom again. They could see in Jesus someone who could be that king.

With these things in mind, they give Jesus great praise. They honor Him as a real king. They laid out a carpet of palm branches for Him to come in on. They called out praise to Him, honoring Him as the king.

Nearly 2,000 years later, Jesus still comes into the lives and hearts of men and women as a king. He humbled comes in. He does not demand that you follow Him and force you to be His subject. He comes in a calm way on a colt showing His love and care for you.

Believers need to be willing to give Him praise as the King. Americans do not like the idea of someone being a king, but that is what Jesus is and needs to be in your life. Allow Him to be your king.

Allow Jesus to be your king, and shout out praises to Him and about Him. Do not be silent. Let the world know that Jesus is your king and is The King. The world will try to silent you, but Jesus said if you are silent the rocks will cry out.

I pray today that you will know Jesus as your King; that you will shout out praises to Him; that you will let the world know that Jesus is your king; that you will not be ashamed of Jesus; and that God will use you to build His kingdom.

Luke 19:8 Signs of a Change

“But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, Look, Lord! Here and now I give half my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.” Luke 19:8

Zacchaeus, a tax collector, was a man who had heard about Jesus and wanted to see Him. In fact, he wanted to see Him so badly that he did something unusual. He climbed up a tree in order to see Jesus as He passed by.

Jesus, then, also did something unusual, for people of that time, He called out to Zacchaeus and told him He would go to his house that day. As Jesus said this many people in the crowd around Him gasped for air. Zacchaeus was a very much hated tax collector. Jesus, the great “man of God” was going to be with a bad sinner.

Immediately there was a change in Zacchaeus. He offers to pay back anyone he had ever cheated four times what was cheated. He also gives his money to the poor.

When a person comes in contact with Jesus there will be a change. For some there is a digging in of the heals to remain in the world. They do not want anything to do with Jesus. For others they realize who He really is and dedicate their hearts and lives to Him.

As a person dedicates his life to Jesus, there must be a change. Sinful habits must be done away with, apologies must be made, and wrongs corrected.

All too often, people have come to Jesus in a service or with someone witnessing to them, and there is no real change. They continue to live the same lifestyle they have always lived. Many in the church have not changed in many years. This should not be.

Each day, seek God to show you how to live more like Jesus. See what areas of your life need to improve and what sins you must toss out. There should be outward signs of the change God is making inside you. Can you or anyone else see those changes?

I pray today that God will help you to change; that you will live more for Jesus each day; that your outward lifestyle will reflect Jesus; that you will not live for Jesus just on Sundays; and that you will be a witness for Jesus.