“You were expecting a bloke – beard, bible, bad breath…”
Reference: v.39 Some of the teachers of the law responded, “Well said, teacher!” (NIV Bible)
Explore: When I tell people that I am a minister of religion I often get some pretty interesting responses. The most common response is that of surprise. Not only am I female but I am also fairly young. People’s perception of a priest or a minister is an unfit, grey-haired, conservative gentleman. Now I know that many clergy do not fit into this category, but it always seems to take people by surprise when we don’t. I love the first episode of the Vicar of Dibley when the new vicar introduces herself to the congregation for the first time. The Vicar responds to their surprised looks by saying, “You were expecting a bloke – beard, bible, bad breath… And instead you got a babe with a bob cut and a magnificent bosom.” I guess we don’t always fit into people’s stereotypes.
Application: I must admit, often when I think of the Pharisees and the Sadducees from the Bible I lump them all into the same box. The common theme of the religious teachers and leaders throughout the gospels was that they were judgmental of Jesus and always looking for a way to trap Him. And yet, it seems that their ranks were divided. In this passage we hear of some teachers throwing difficult questions at Jesus but also some teachers appreciating his wisdom. While they all might carry the same title, they certainly had differing views from each other. It is hard not to place stereotypes on people but we must remember that we are all created differently. Our God does not lump us all in the one box but sees us for the individual that He created us to be. May we not limit other people by our own perceptions but see each person as unique creations from God.
Prayer: Lord, it is easy for us to judge other people by their career or the people they associate with. Help us to appreciate each part of Your creation and see each person being made in Your image. Amen.
Who have you judged incorrectly?
This article was written by Linda Bailey
Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.