MATTHEW 5:20_But I say unto you, that except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and the Pharisees…
Scribes interpreted the Law and copied it into writings. If anyone knew the laws – from the greatest precept to the least – it was the Scribes. They were not politicians, but did possess great power and expected respect from their students in the synagogues. Because of their knowledge, they would most likely be the first to cringe if a jot or a tittle of the Law were violated.
The Pharisees, also learned in the Law, took more of a legal approach to the keeping of it. They were strong segregationists. They wanted no part of non-Jewish mixing.
These two sects were the primary religious leaders of Jesus’ day. Religious leaders are supposed to be the good guys, right? If you can’t depend upon them to lead in the right direction, who can you depend upon?
There were some among the Pharisees who listened to and developed a heart for Jesus. But oh my goodness, what a sad place to be if you went to most of them for love, joy, or peace. They followed the letter of the Law rather than the spirit.
Lord Jesus, I want to live in the spirit of Your Law. Please show me when I am living more in the letter than the spirit. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ is true righteousness—He will help me gain that!