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Close But Not Quite

"When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born. And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet, and thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule My people Israel" (Matthew 2:3-6).

To their credit, these theologians—without even looking up the passages—spilled out the answer to Herod's question. They knew the answer. But, notice this: not one of the chief priests and scribes leaves Jerusalem to go to Bethlehem and see the Messiah who had come. These theologians were so captivated by their religious activity and adherence to the Law and their traditions that Jesus meant nothing to them. Their eyes were completely closed to the work of God right in front of their faces.

It's hard to imagine this, but isn't it so close to where we live our lives? This is a warning for us. Knowledge about God, religious activity, and tradition are no substitute for the reality of knowing Jesus personally as our Saviour. Knowledge of the Bible and the things of God are worthless without a willingness to submit ourselves to the truth to which it points.

—Steve Muncherian