In the 12th chapter in the Gospel of Matthew, we learn more about the Pharisees and why they hated Jesus.
The chapter starts by telling us that Jesus and His disciples went through some grainfields on Sabbath.
The Sabbath is the seventh day of the week.
For some, this means that absolutely no work can be done.
However, the disciples of Jesus were hungry and when they went through the field, they ate some grain.
The Pharisees saw it and they told Jesus that His disciples are working on Sabbath.
But Jesus knew that His disciples didn’t do anything wrong.
He reminded the Pharisees of the fact that even David ae showbread when he was hungry.
He also said:
But if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the guiltless.
– Jesus Christ
This then drove the Pharisees away because they had to agree with Jesus.
They tried to trap Him
Not long after, Jesus went into a synagogue.
There he met a man with a withered hand.
The Pharisees knew that Jesus wanted to heal the man – some say they brought the man to the synagogue intentionally.
They tried to trap Him by asking Him again: “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?”
What man is there among you who has one sheep, and if it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will not lay hold of it and lift it out? 12Of how much more value then is a man than a sheep? Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.
– Jesus Christ
The Pharisees realized that Jesus is allowed to heal on the Sabbath.
But they were upset, and this wasn’t the last time they tried to trap Jesus.
Why they HATED Jesus
But why did the Pharisees hate Jesus?
Jesus never did anything to them.
All he ever did was spread happiness and the word of God.
So why did they hate Him anyway?
It’s because He attracted people wherever He went.
And the Pharisees were jealous and envious.
Remember our earlier sermon where we talked about Jesus having dinner with a tax collector?
The Pharisees didn’t understand that.
Because their ways are different: They don’t compliment the good, they only comment on the bad.
They condemn people who do something that’s not right in their opinion.
Like they condemned the disciples of Jesus for eating grain on the Sabbath.
Jesus is different, he doesn’t condemn.
He loves those who love Him, and he forgives them if they do wrong.
That is why people love Jesus so much.
And that is why the Pharisees hated Jesus.
That’s not the only reason why they hated him.
This will come up again in later sermons.
What we should learn from this
The Pharisees hated and plotted again Jesus.
Did Jesus hate and plot against them too?
No, he didn’t.
Because he doesn’t need to – he knows that the people love Him!
And that’s how we should do it too.
Love Jesus, don’t hate those who hate Him.
In fact, you should pity them, if anything, for they are lost.
You can try to help them by teaching them about God.
But remember: Don’t hate. Love even your enemies!
What do you think? Is it easy to love your enemies?
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