Never has anyone spoken like this!

Then the temple police went back to the chief priests and Pharisees, who asked them, “Why did you not arrest him?” The police answered, “Never has anyone spoken like this!” Then the Pharisees replied, “Surely you have not been deceived too, have you? Has any one of the authorities or of the Pharisees believed in him? But this crowd, which does not know the law—they are accursed.” -John 7:45-49 NRSV

Jesus spoke amazing words of life, compassion and healing, yet some believed him to be a heretic. Faith and hope were birthed in many who heard him speak. But sadly, those who were bound up in religion proudly opposed Jesus and his message of mercy and compassion. Small wonder that Christ called them hypocrites devoid of mercy.

And even today, leaders still seems to be preoccupied with religious orthodoxy more than they are with mercy and compassion. I sometimes wonder if they would recognize Christ if he appeared to them today. These who are versed in doctrine, would they too call others accursed? Or would they repent of their narrow orthodoxy and welcome them?

Help is Lord to be people who welcome those who welcome you.

... this devotion is part of an ongoing series on the Gospel of John.

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