Call to Worship November 4 2018

Expository Thoughts on the Gospel of Luke

J.C. Ryle Luke 20:1-8

“Let us notice, lastly, in this passage — the falsehood of which our Lord’s enemies were guilty. In reply to our Lord’s question whether John’s baptism was from Heaven or from men — they answered that ‘they did not know where it was from.’ This was a downright lie! They did know, but they would not admit it. They knew that if they said what they really believed — then they would condemn themselves. If they confessed that John was a prophet sent from God — then they would be guilty of a gross inconsistency in not believing his testimony about Christ.

Falsehoods like this, it may be feared, are only too common among unconverted men. Thousands will lie, rather than acknowledge themselves to be in the wrong. Lying is just one of the sins to which the human heart is most naturally inclined, and one of the commonest sins in the world. Gehazi, Ananias, and Sapphira — have more followers and imitators than Peter and Paul. The number of lies which are constantly told by men, to save their own credit, and to cover over their own wickedness — is probably far greater than we are aware.

The true servant of Christ will do well to remember these things as he travels through this world. He must not believe all that he hears, and especially in the matter of religion. He must not suppose that unconverted men really believe all that they say — in their own hearts. They often feel more than they appear to feel. They often say things against religion and religious people — which they secretly know to be untrue. They often know the Gospel is true — but have not the courage to confess it. They often know the Christians life is right — but are too proud to say so. The chief priests and scribes are not the only people who deal dishonestly in religion, and say what they know to be false.

Then let the servant of Christ go patiently on his way. Those who are now his enemies, will one day confess that he was right — though they used to cry loudly that he was wrong.”