In Matthew 16:1, Jesus tells His disciples, “How is it you do not understand that I did not speak to you concerning bread? But to beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” Now this was the second time Jesus had told them this. The first time they thought He told them because they had forgotten to take bread for their journey.
I guess the disciples were kicking themselves because they knew Jesus would not have forgotten to take bread. He remembers to do everything, especially the important things. A few years ago, we went through a phase where we asked ourselves, “What Would Jesus Do?” We started to see the letters WWJD everywhere in the Christian environment.
I imagine the WWJD letters are still around today, but the question has lost some of its emphasis. Like everything, too much of a thing can easily make that thing common and perhaps unimportant to us. Now I’m not saying we should not wonder about Jesus. But perhaps a better more lasting question—one that will never lose its importance—would be to ask ourselves, “Am I learning the way Jesus wants me to learn?”
“How is it that you do not understand I did not speak to you concerning bread?” That was Jesus’ question to His disciples. But Jesus was saying to them, you must not only understand the words I say, but you must also learn to comprehend what is said and to learn what is meant.
Jesus was using words they all knew to talk about ways of living they all should know. Having bread and water are necessary to sustain life, but how we live is critical to how fulfilling life can be for us.
“Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” Here Jesus did not use the words “be aware.” He chose the one word “beware.” Sometimes we can confuse the two. To be aware is to simply learn to be conscious of what is around you. There is no real danger. Be aware of what you need to take on your journey so that you don’t forget anything important.
But by using “beware,” He is saying to us stop, listen, use caution because there is danger around. Watch out for what you cannot see ahead—there is danger lurking. Beware of where you go because some places are not safe for you.
Beware of playing with fire; the fire could burn you.
Beware of who you hang around with; they may not have your best interest at heart.
Beware of who you live like; they may not be living right.
Beware of who you learn from; they may not have learned what will help you.
If we are going to do what Jesus does, we will need to understand what He says and comprehend what it all means. The easiest way to do this is to submit ourselves to learn the things that He has learned and to learn the things He knows and tries to teach us daily.
When Jesus said beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the Sadducees, He wasn’t speaking about bread at all. The disciples had learned that leaven was used to help make bread, so they thought Jesus was speaking about bread.
If you want to make sure you get your living as right as possible, set your heart to learn what Jesus has learned. Learn how He learns. Learn why He learns the things He learns. He tells us to take His yoke upon ourselves and to learn from Him.
Let’s do that. The best example of how we should live is perhaps found more in learning to learn from what Jesus has learned. When we learn like He learns perhaps we will be better at doing like He does.
Live a Delivered Life. Love you.