Loving the Praise of Men

John 12:42-43.

Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on Him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue:  

For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.

The Idol of Popularity" — John 12:42-43 (What Jesus Did!)

In this day of instant communication, I think we can understand the human desire and need for the praise of other people. After all, some supporters of the conservative Presidential candidate are actually fearful of putting his signs in their yards, dreading the possibility of vandalism and destruction of their property. Such lows America has reached!

Some of the religious leaders did believe on Jesus, but they were afraid to voice their beliefs. Doing so could get them put out of the synagogue, excommunicated from their peers and neighbors.

We’ve watched BLMers forcing themselves onto outdoor diners, taking their tables, screaming into their faces. Yes, it’s intimidating. Very. Some people, to avoid being physically hurt, have submitted to demands that they raise a clenched fist and declare “Black Lives Matter.” I was thinking about that the other day. Black lives DO matter. We were all created by the same God, and we are all the same under the skin. What I object to is being forced against my will to utter a mantra that identifies me as a supporter of hatred, crime, looting, vandalism and destruction. I do NOT support any of that.

When I was a child in Sunday School, we often sang:

Hatred for what we believe, for who we are, is not new. Cain hated Abel for his obedience to God and the resulting blessing, so Cain killed his brother. Did that eliminate the hatred in Cain’s heart? Of course not. He was a marked man for as long as he lived, known as the first to commit fratricide. Hatred, once rooted in our hearts, digs in deeply.

The Jewish leaders who believed in Jesus were more concerned about being accepted by men than being in a right relationship with God. So they just kept quiet. They continued the rituals, followed the Law, and kept their mouths shut.

We do not have any right whatsoever to look down on them. We, too, are equally guilty about just keeping our mouths shut when we’re afraid of the condemnation of others.

5 thoughts on “Loving the Praise of Men

  1. This is one of those all-time great passages clearly revealing what for the most part remains a hidden and willfully unacknowledged reality showcasing the true priorities of Christians. Stepping into His greater Light and standing with Him while knowing it will cost one socially is an ever-present risk His followers are always presented with. When one is ready to accept any loss for a closer and greater walk with the Lord Jesus is when one realizes he is not actually losing anything but gaining that much more, including one’s freedom to continue receiving more love, more truth, more spiritual development, more spiritual growth unto maturity, more revelation and knowledge of His Word, more joy, more life, more capacity to serve Him and others, and more desire and ability to give Him everything we have to give and allow Him to do likewise. Reminds me of a song…

    Blessings to you, Linda. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think that is a temptation, Linda, to not stand up for what we believe because we don’t want to ruffle any feathers. I know I feel that way on social media a lot, although I also feel like there would be no point in my speaking out if it wouldn’t change anyone’s minds. However, it’s important to do everything in love, of course.

    As for the BLM protesters, the vast majority of them are peaceful. I don’t agree with looting or destruction either, but I think it’s important to realize why the few violent ones are doing that, the utter frustration and desperation they feel at years of black people people being killed by police with impunity. They aren’t anarchists, they want something, anything, to change. Hopefully we can change the system so such things aren’t necessary.

    God bless. I hope you have a great week.
    -David

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, I’m sure you’re right. I love social media for the chance to connect with people and keep up with friends and relatives who live far away, but it’s also a great place for miscommunication, hyperbole and a lot of negative side effects. There’s still a place for meeting in person, when it’s possible. Have a great week coming up. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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