What Really Ticks Jesus Off / Luke 11:37-53 NIV
“We can say with confidence and a clear conscience that we have lived with a God-given holiness and sincerity in all our dealings. We have depended on God’s grace, not on our own human wisdom. That is how we have conducted ourselves before the world, and especially toward you.”2 Corinthians 1:12 NLT
“The goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart, a good conscience, and a sincere faith.” 1 Timothy 1:5 CSB
Nothing about us should be fake. Be real. Be authentic in your Christianity. Authenticity was important to Paul, because it was so important to Jesus. This concept of “the real deal” is behind every one of the “woes” Jesus criticizes against the Pharisees. His harshest preaching was against religious leaders. You should take these 6 woes to heart BOTH for your own conduct AND for those you follow!
#1 - When we fake __________ when we’re really ___________.
“Now then, you Pharisees clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside you are full of greed and wickedness… But now as for what is inside you - be generous to the poor, and everything will be clean for you.” Luke 11:39, 41 NIV
Generosity in leadership is a big deal to God because God Himself is so generous. The Bible tells us that God sees our heart - He sees what is inside of us. When we fake a generous outside, but inside we are corrupted by our own selfish desires, God knows all about that!
Actions speak louder than feelings or internal prayers to God. And if you’ve ever done this - be generous to the poor - you know the truth of it. You feel differently afterward. You are closer to the generous God Father because of your own generosity.
#2 - When we follow the ___________ without the _________.
“Woe to you Pharisees, because you give God a tenth… but you neglect justice and the love of God. You should have practiced the latter without leaving the former undone.” Luke 11:42 NIV
The example Jesus gives is a surprising one for us because of our cultural differences. He uses the example of tithing. Giving the first fruits - the first tenth of our income to the church. This is not just a financial principle, not just a means by which the Lord’s work is done, but more importantly is faith activity. A demonstration of trust. When we give the tithe, we are saying NOT that the tenth belongs to God and the 90% belongs to us. No! We are saying it all belongs to God! 100%! To help me remember this and to encourage my faith in God’s provision, I give 10%.
Cultural difference. In the synagogues of Jesus’ day, they proved their tenth. It would be like you turning in your 1040 to the church each April and then the church naming the number that would be your 10%. Like a tax. And that would be your responsibility to pay over the next year.
The Pharisaical leaders were making sure to pay their tithe. They checked off this box. Easily proved. They paid their share. They wrote the check, but inside they “neglected justice and the love of God.” Again, this is an inside outside issue. The inside must align with the outside.
#3 - When we are more concerned about _________ than _________.
“Woe to you Pharisees, because you love the most important seats in the synagogues and respectful greetings in the marketplaces… you are like unmarked graves, which people walk over without knowing it.” Luke 11:43-44 NIV
This focus on how we are honored (or not) can disease our souls and turn us bitter and make us ineffective for Kingdom work. Solution?
“Your giving should be done in secret. Your Father can see what is done in secret, and he will reward you.” Matthew 6:4 NCV
Anonymous generosity. Giving without receiving. Donation without notation. You may not have noticed it, but this hint is given inside the verse - “like unmarked graves.” Ultimately people are not going to remember you or even honor where you’re buried. So why not do something that will be remembered eternally by the only Eternal One? Your cure to your need for People Honor is to go for God Honor.
#4 - When we expect _________ what we ___________.
“And you experts in the law, woe to you, because you load people down with burdens they can hardly carry, and you yourselves will not lift one finger to help them.” Luke 11:46 NIV
Key leadership principle: Lead the way by actually doing things first. Setting the example. Showing the actions others should take by doing the actions yourself.
#5 - When we ____________ God’s messengers and __________.
“Woe to you, because you build tombs for the prophets, and it was your ancestors who killed them So you testify that you approve of what your ancestors did; they killed the prophets, and you build their tombs.” Luke 11:47-48 NIV
When you submit yourself to the teaching of preacher (whether here or elsewhere), you really are saying to God - please through Your Holy Spirit speak to me through the words Your servants bring. This should be your attitude every Sunday.
“God was pleased to save those who believe through the foolishness of preaching.”1 Corinthians 1:21 CEV
This attitude is not just about hearing the message but also the respect you give to your pastor and to his authority. Not just to his face. Especially in how you think about and talk about him to others. Many a pastor has had his reputation torn apart after Sunday morning is over.
#6 - When we ___________ God’s Word and those who _________.
“Woe to you experts in the law, because you have taken away the key to knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you have hindered those who were entering.” Luke 11:52 NIV
Woe to any man or any woman - leader or follower - who stands in the way of a person and His Creator! We believe in God’s Word as His revelation of Himself to us. We believe in Christ’s church as the means by which Christ offers His fellowship and the companionship of other believers to those who want to know Him.