Ecclesiastes 5:8–20; Galatians 3:23–4:11; Matthew 15:1–20
St Paul writes, “Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods” (Gal 4:8). The writer of Ecclesiastes would agree.
Our nature is to desire wealth, so we must work and work to earn it. When we have some it is never enough. We are not satisfied. We are not the master of money and wealth; they are our master. We are enslaved to them, working day and night not only to earn them, but to protect and keep them.
Jesus points out to the Pharisees that they are more concerned with following religious tradition (their master) than they are about keeping the commandments of God. They are enslaved to those traditions just like many in the church today are enslaved to their local traditions and rules, rather than living in the freedom of faith. (“We’ve always done it this way.”)
Paul reminds us that we who have been baptized into Christ have “put on” Christ. The garment of Christ we now wear contains the freedom to live our life serving God, rather than serving rules and traditions. It is a freedom that places us under our correct Master. Remember, you are clothed in the freedom of Christ Jesus.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, we thank you for giving us the freedom to live in this world for you, the true God. Amen.
Today’s devotion was written by William E. Maki, Pastor of Zion Lutheran Church, St. Marys, OH.