Warning - Again

Matthew 16:5-12
5When the disciples reached the other side, they had forgotten to bring any bread. 6Jesus said to them, “Watch and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” 7And they began discussing it among themselves, saying, “We brought no bread.” 8But Jesus, aware of this, said, “O you of little faith, why are you discussing among yourselves the fact that you have no bread? 9Do you not yet perceive? Do you not remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? 10Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? 11How is it that you fail to understand that I did not speak about bread? Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” 12Then they understood that he did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

Post might be a little short today - working at the airport on my phone. We'll see how that works!

This reading really stands alone in it's intensity. Jesus has a conversation with the Disciples that borders on the comical. While it certainly wasn't funny at the time we must stand amazed at how thick headed the Disciples can be and while Jesus did not sin at any time, He must have been a little frustrated with these guys.

As Jesus antagonizes the Pharisees (and now too the Sadducees) the time is drawing ever closer for His Passion and death. Just being associated with Jesus is quickly becoming dangerous and the Disciples just don't seem to get that. While He expressly warns them about the struggles ahead and the certainty of death they focus on what's for lunch! They have witnessed Jesus feed multiple thousands of people and now they're worried about where to get a little bread. While I doubt if Jesus rolled His eyes at anyone, this certainly would have been the moment to do so. Fortunately, the Disciples do eventually get what He's saying to them and realize that the Pharisees are lethal to their faith (and their lives). 

It would be easy to point fingers and turn this into a lesson on how to be more focused or pay attention to the more important things. But instead, I want to point out that Jesus hangs in there with the Disciples even as they aren't always very quick on the uptake. While He points out how small minded they are being, He also keeps teaching them and loving them, never wavering from His commitment to them. And it's the same for us. No matter how small minded we get or how quickly we lose focus He remains with us, faithfully teaching us and growing our faith. While we can be thick headed, He is constantly with us and patiently loves us. While I might have deserved it, Jesus has never rolled His eyes at me!

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