What is just too heavy for you?
“They tie up heavy, cumbersome loads and put them on other people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them.” (Matthew 23 v 4)
The Pharisees were so committed to the system they had built but it did nothing to lead the people to recognise the move of God through Jesus.
The cumbersome load was the failure of not reaching the expectations of pleasing God.
There are 613 do’s and don’ts in the Law of Moses.
But then the Mishnah contains more commandments. This was a commentary on those 613 laws which had further man-made rules which served to help people not even come close to breaking the Law of Moses. At the time of Christ these were passed down the generations verbally, it would not be till the 3rd century were they written down. They were not laws, the intention was to train in thinking through the law. So the Mishnah tries to help the questions regarding: Can cheese and meat be on the same table? How much water is needed for a ritual bath? The punishment of a rebellious son is clearly in the Law however, what are the behaviours that actually make a son rebellious? That’s what the Mishnah helps with. They served as oral laws and Jesus denounced the Pharisees who did nothing to help the people.
They created cumbersome loads and placed them on the people who could never carry them and this served only as a reminder they had failed in pleasing God.
In 2021 what is coming against you? What are you burdened down with? Be careful with the cultural norms that may be laid upon you.
“Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account.” This is the Word of God (Hebrews 13:17). However, what does that obedience look like? What are the expectations of submission? Is this leading you to love Jesus more? Years ago I sat in the offices of a senior Pastor waiting to be taken out into the church service to preach. I was sat with members of his staff. When he walked in they all stood to attention. I thought a king had walked in and sadly that’s what they believed!
Cultural norms that may have the intention of good can do more harm to those who do not meet them. Tear them up.
Relationship with Jesus not the rules of Jesus is the most important thing.