Then they understood that He did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and Sadducees.
– Matthew 16:12
As Jesus cautions His disciples to beware of the leavening doctrine of the Pharisees and Sadducees, I think it begs the question, just what is (or was) their teaching?
Certainly their teaching centered upon religious ritualism and formality over repentance and spiritual transformation. There’s was a teaching that emphasized external displays of righteousness, and the praises of men as a reward, verses an internal holiness that only God could see and honor. The Pharisees and Sadducees lived a form of doctrine that sought earthly authority and political power gains, but such are vain before God. They were self-righteous and proud, but Jesus calls us to a humble dependence upon His righteousness alone.
Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees, it’s potency is alive and well today too.
Enduring Word Commentary with Pastor David Guzik
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Additional Daily Devotionals
My Utmost for His Highest | Oswald Chambers
Morning & Evening | Charles Spurgeon