The Accidental Pharisee

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Jesus and Pharisees

Now one of the Pharisees was requesting Him to dine with him, and He entered the Pharisee's house and reclined at the table. Luke 7:36 (NAS)

I'm reading through Luke, just trying to draw closer to Jesus by viewing his life through the eyes of Luke.
(I bet a lot of you know Luke was a physician--but did you know physicians back in New Testament times were slaves? I learned that at a recent conference.)
In Luke 7, I re-read verse 36:
Now one of the Pharisees was requesting Him to dine with him, and He entered the Pharisee's house and reclined at the table.
Whenever I think of Jesus and Pharisees, I think of adversaries, I don't think of a host and a dinner guest. If you read the passage through verse 50, it doesn't sound like the Pharisee, Simon, was a very hospitable host. He didn't wash Jesus' feet when he entered the house, as was customary, and he didn't greet him with a kiss, also the custom of the day.
Maybe Simon the Pharisee was only pretending to like Jesus. Maybe he was only trying to set him up to put him down. Or maybe he was curious about what Jesus was teaching and wanted to spend some uninterrupted time with Jesus.
I don't know and guessing would be reading between the lines.
But, whatever the Pharisee's motives, Jesus was willing to spend time with him. Pure or impure of heart, Jesus was willing to break bread with him.

Thinking Out Loud: Jesus looked past labels--the ones we put on ourselves and the ones others put on us. Simon the Pharisee probably was proud of the label "Pharisee". He was also quick to call another person "sinner" (verse 39). Jesus looked at each individual person--not any man-made title--and saw value. Sometimes I still feel ashamed that I stumbled into Phariseeism without even realizing it. I need to remember Jesus doesn't see me as "The Accidental Pharisee". He sees me as Beth. Just Beth. And in his eyes, I have value.

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1 Comments:

  • Beth,
    I love where you took this. Thanks for the reminder of who Jesus is, and of His great and perfect love for each of us. May we always remember the truths you shared of how He sees us and how He validates us through His love!
    Jeanne

    By Blogger Jeanne T, At October 23, 2008 at 9:33 PM  

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