Saturday Devotions: Matthew 16:5-12

Matthew 16:5-12:

When the disciples reached the other side, they had forgotten to bring any bread. Jesus said to them, “Watch and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” And they began discussing it among themselves, saying, “We brought no bread.” But Jesus, aware of this, said, “O you of little faith, why are you discussing among yourselves the fact that you have no bread? Do you not yet perceive? Do you not remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? How is it that you fail to understand that I did not speak about bread? Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” Then they understood that he did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

I’ve been told by not a few folks that my posts can stretch too long.  I want to remedy this (at least most of the time).  I also want to start a Saturday devotion in which I quote a snatch of Scripture and very briefly reflect on it.

The matter that jumped out to me from this passage while reading it this morning is the disciple’s obvious lack of faith in Christ.  The fickleness of Christ’s followers is legendary, of course, but it never ceases to amaze.  What is really astonishing, though, is how little faith you and I have.  Unlike the disciples, we know the story.  We can see from the canon where history is heading.  We have a clear view of the plan of redemption.  And yet we struggle just like the disciples to trust in Christ.

Our life is simply this: a fight for faith.  Really, I think you can boil the Christian life down to that.  Will you exercise a moment-by-moment trust in Christ, or will you not?  Will you taste His goodness regularly or will you switch back and forth between anxiety and trust like a double-minded channel surfer?  That’s the question before us, I think, until this life ends.

It’s easy to slam the disciples.  It’s hard for us to look into our own hearts and see that we are no different.  We have exactly the same need for dependence on the Holy Spirit, for perseverance in the faith, for trust in Jesus Christ who has not failed us and never will.  If Christ talked with us today, would He commend us?  Or would we hear those same awful words, “O you of little faith,” though we have infinite reason to trust Him?

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  • Al

    Good comments, and I think this is a good addition, that is to comment directly on Scripture.

    However, on a less serious note: you take away a word or two or maybe a whole paragraph from a long post on Tuesday and Thursday and add a Saturday post of 4 or 5 paragraphs. Is the total weekly word count going to increase or decrease?


  • owenstrachan

    Good question. Management is currently figuring out how to answer it.