Scripture Reflections: Matthew 16
5When 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." 7They discussed this among themselves and said, "It is because we didn't bring any bread."
Lord Jesus--The disciples found themselves knee deep in conflict that they did not fully understand. There were political forces that were at work within the nation arraying against your ministry which the disciples had not worked out the full implications of. You understood the full ferment of Pharisees and Sadducees thought process. You understood that they were more concerned with the agenda of their pressure group than anything else. They had come to the place where spiritual formation was not the point, power was the point...attention was the point.
The disciples heard you mention yeast and they thought literally and you were to speaking of yeast metaphorically. They were in the slow reading group spiritually. How many times have I been there? Some place where I have all of the data but just can't put the pieces together to make the puzzle work.
Lord Jesus when I am in that place it is not always because I want to be or intend to be...sometimes I get stuck on the simple things. But then you already knew that. It almost always has something to do with the way that I am able to get a hold of the idea of faith worked out in the real world where I need to eat and where the pressures of meeting deadlines get in my way.
8Aware of their discussion, Jesus asked, "You of little faith, why are you talking among yourselves about having no bread? 9Do you still not understand? Don't you remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 10Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 11How is it you don't understand that I was not talking to you about bread?
Lord Jesus--You will not let me off the hook, just like you confronted the disciples. It is all about faith. The issues is not bread, or any of the everyday needs that have to be filled to make a living. You were able to feed the masses, the inference is ...don't you silly little boys think that I can feed you when you need to eat?
But be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees." 12Then 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.
Lord Jesus--It is in the simple things of trusting you in the everyday things of life that the implications of faith are worked out. The teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees was more about power and retaining power than about spiritual formation and of coming face to face with God in everyday life. You do not need political pressure groups watching out for your political agenda. You did not need that then and you do not need that now. Spiritual formation is not something that is about power bases or the politics, it is instead saying yes to you in the everyday choices that are right in front of me.
Lord Jesus--Forgive me when my lack of faith for the simple things gets in the way of the spiritual formation that you are waiting on me to catch up to...forgive me for my slow learning spiritually.