ImmerseMessiah NLT - Flipbook - Page 45
the marketplaces. Yes, what sorrow awaits you! For you are like hidden
graves in a field. People walk over them without knowing the corruption
they are stepping on.”
“Teacher,” said an expert in religious law, “you have insulted us, too, in
what you just said.”
“Yes,” said Jesus, “what sorrow also awaits you experts in religious
law! For you crush people with unbearable religious demands, and you
never lift a finger to ease the burden. What sorrow awaits you! For you
build monuments for the prophets your own ancestors killed long ago.
But in fact, you stand as witnesses who agree with what your ancestors
did. They killed the prophets, and you join in their crime by building the
monuments! This is what God in his wisdom said about you: ‘I will send
prophets and apostles to them, but they will kill some and persecute the
“As a result, this generation will be held responsible for the murder of
all God’s prophets from the creation of the world—from the murder of
Abel to the murder of Zechariah, who was killed between the altar and the
sanctuary. Yes, it will certainly be charged against this generation.
“What sorrow awaits you experts in religious law! For you remove the
key to knowledge from the people. You don’t enter the Kingdom yourselves, and you prevent others from entering.”
As Jesus was leaving, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees became hostile and tried to provoke him with many questions. They wanted
to trap him into saying something they could use against him.
Meanwhile, the crowds grew until thousands were milling about and stepping on each other. Jesus turned first to his disciples and warned them,
“Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees—their hypocrisy. The time is coming
when everything that is covered up will be revealed, and all that is secret
will be made known to all. Whatever you have said in the dark will be
heard in the light, and what you have whispered behind closed doors will
be shouted from the housetops for all to hear!
“Dear friends, don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they
cannot do any more to you after that. But I’ll tell you whom to fear. Fear
God, who has the power to kill you and then throw you into hell. Yes, he’s
the one to fear.
“What is the price of five sparrows—two copper coins? Yet God does
not forget a single one of them. And the very hairs on your head are all
numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole
flock of sparrows.
“I tell you the truth, everyone who acknowledges me publicly here on
earth, the Son of Man will also acknowledge in the presence of God’s