February 14, 2021

Accoutrements of prayer in the seat of Moses

Jesus: The Pharisees and the scribes occupy the seat of Moses. So you should do the things they tell you to do—but don’t do the things they do. They heap heavy burdens upon their neighbors’ backs, and they prove unwilling to do anything to help shoulder the load. They are interested, above all, in presentation: they wrap their heads and arms in the accoutrements of prayer, they cloak themselves with flowing tasseled prayer garments, they covet the seats of honor at fine banquets and in the synagogue, and they love it when people recognize them in the marketplace, call them “Teacher,” and beam at them.

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