46. A new teaching!
"If anyone chooses to do God's will, he will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own." (John 7:17) The Jews became people of the word, as they turned to it for comfort after their temple was destroyed by the Babylonians. But they became increasingly zealous about observing the law to its letter that they entirely missed out the Spirit behind the law! Therefore, Jesus bluntly told them: "You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life ... yet you refuse to come to me to have life."(John 5:39-40) "You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you: 'They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.'" (Matthew 15:9/Isaiah 29:13) Jesus put the Spirit back into the teaching and it sprang to life! 'The people were all so amazed that they asked each other, "What is this? A new teaching - and with authority!' (Mark 1:27) We who are under the new covenant have been called to be ministers of the Spirit too! 'He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant - not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.'(2 Corinthians 3:6) Let the Spirit guide us into all truth today. "When he, the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth."( John 16:13) The Church needs teachers who can bring the Spirit back into God's word. "Therefore every teacher of the law who has been instructed about the kingdom of heaven is like the owner of a house who brings out of his storeroom new treasures as well as old."( Matthew 13:52) Amen.