Saturday, November 15, 2008

The gratitude of God

I was reading Jesus in Matthew 6 this morning, in which he says to do what we do to be seen in secret by God, rather than to be seen by men. His reason is that when we get the praise of ungrateful men we have our reward, and it's not much. The implication, which I hadn't laid to heart before, is that God is not ungrateful. He will notice and appreciate the smallest things done in the truth.

Being unaware of God's grateful nature has certainly worked to make me seek to please men instead. The other thing I noticed while I was reading is that this attentiveness to man is the essence of hypocrisy. Since man looks on the outward appearance and not on the heart, when man and not God is the audience, we will make the outside clean instead of the inside. It's not a matter of personal virtue. It's the nature of the audience we want to please.

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