Matthew 23:13 (ESV)
Seven Woes to the Scribes and Pharisees (Woe #1)
13 “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut the kingdom of heaven in people’s faces. For you neither enter yourselves nor allow those who would enter
to go in.
A “woe” is opposite of a blessing. It is defined as an interjection, used to express grief, regret, or distress. The first
woe against the scribes and Pharisees, in which Jesus calls them a hypocrite, is based on a faulty idea that you earn your way into heaven. Can you ever be good enough or do enough good works to earn your way into heaven??? The answer is NO!
But the Scribes and Pharisees believed that getting into heaven was based on your own righteousness. Well… the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees falls short, because it is not based on your own righteousness, but on faith. So…
the very thing they believed in prevented themselves from entering heaven. No one can earn their way. It is by faith, not by works.
I pray: O
Lord, you tell us that we are saved by faith and not by works. Help us to cling to John 3:16 that states “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.”