Weather Report From Heaven: Sunny and bright, with an abundance of light and lots of singing and rejoicing.
Scripture- “Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean. “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.” – Matthew 23:26-28
Thought: Some musical lyrics just capture the feeling in your heart and soul and are able to put it into words better than you ever could. Such is it with me when I listen to the song “From The Inside Out,” by Hillsong United. Here are some of those lyrics that so touch my soul: “A thousand times I fail, still your mercy remains; should I stumble again, I’m caught in your grace…. My heart and my soul, I give you control, consume me from the inside out. Let justice and praise become my embrace to love you from the inside out. “Everlasting, your light will shine when all else fails; never ending, your glory goes beyond all things and the cry of my heart is to bring you praise from the inside out, Lord my soul cries out.” I love these lyrics so much because they’re very personal. They speak right to my heart about how God began a work in my life by changing the parts of my life that were hidden, but that were severely in need of mending. His grace and mercy never left me even though my actions many times deserved far worse. His never- ending glory kept picking me up from the scrap heap of my wrong thoughts, words and deeds. He dusted me off and got me back in the game with the simple advice to try and do better next time, not in my strength but in His. He knew me better than I knew myself and He alone knew that although I could look good on the “outside” for all the world to see, that on the “inside,” I was damaged goods, severely in need of a Doctor.
This was God’s personal touch on my life, but it was really no different that when He walked the earth and let others who were willing to be vulnerable and admit their sinful condition see His great love in action. One group however who were always opposed to Jesus’s message of Godly redemption via repentance were the Religious Leaders of the day known as the Pharisees. Jesus made it clear in his ministry that He didn’t come for those who thought they “had it all together” or those who used their position of perceived power to cast judgment on or lord over others. Instead, Jesus made it known that he came for the sick, those who needed a Doctor. But not always a physical Doctor, but rather those who knew their souls needed mending, whose sin had separated them from God. That would be all of us, according to Romans 3:23!
In Mark 2:17 Jesus says, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” The fact that Jesus often ate with and hung out with those the Pharisees considered unworthy drove them crazy. They lorded their religiosity over the common folks who they saw as sinners and Jesus was indignant. He wasted no words in letting them know that although on the “outside you appear to people as righteous, on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.” Kind of like the cultural elite and Globalist Political Leaders of today. Jesus was no fan of theirs. They had it all wrong. They thought their legalism, which made the “outside” look good, would save them from God’s wrath and judgment.
However, it was their “insides” which were hardened with judgement and contempt that made them unwilling and unable to see their great need for a Savior. That is why the lyrics above speak so clearly and powerfully to my heart and soul. It is only because of Jesus’s love, mercy and grace that He can make our insides right before God. All we have to do is admit our need for the Doctor. He does the rest.