The Gospel of Matthew

This devotional is written by Jae Israel. Jae is originally from California, has a 4 year old daughter, sings and cooks.

Matthew 16:1-12

The demand for a sign
16 The Pharisees and Sadducees came to Jesus and tested him by asking him to show them a sign from heaven.

2 He replied, 'When evening comes, you say, "It will be fair weather, for the sky is red," 3 and in the morning, "Today it will be stormy, for the sky is red and overcast." You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times.[a] 4 A wicked and adulterous generation looks for a sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah.' Jesus then left them and went away.

The yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees 5 When they went across the lake, the disciples forgot to take bread. 6 'Be careful,' Jesus said to them. 'Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.'

7 They discussed this among themselves and said, 'It is because we didn't bring any bread.'

8 Aware of their discussion, Jesus asked, 'You of little faith, why are you talking among yourselves about having no bread? 9 Do you still not understand? Don't you remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 10 Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 11 How is it you don't understand that I was not talking to you about bread? But be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.' 12 Then they understood that he was not telling them to guard against the yeast used in bread, but against the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

Reflection

Oh boy, if only it was that easy to see the signs. :) But what this powerful message from God tells us is, it is just that easy. Why you ask? Because not only has God shown time and time again his many signs to us but also given his very unchanging presence (Jesus, God come to earth - who the pharisees continue to miss).

Have you ever been in a situation where you thought to yourself, this will be impossible to survive or fix that is now resolved? Now looking back, did you stop and thank him? There he was, holding your hand to guide and support you- your sign. He made a way for you. He is telling us do not worry about the silly bread for I have shown you far more than this bread yet we still remain unconvinced.

Like the Pharisees and Sadducees it's easy for us to lose our way. We can all too easily stray off-course from what we know. We must always return to our faith in Jesus, to prayer and to trust in him for this will protect us against the growth and spread - just as yeast does - of everything that is not on the footpath to our Lord and Saviour.

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