Matthew 23:4-9 KJV, “For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers. But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi. But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.”
EG White, SOP Vol 3, 1878, Pp. 58-59, “The Pharisees enjoined a multitude of minute regulations having their foundation in tradition, and unreasonably restraining personal liberty of action. They strictly expounded certain portions of the law, exacting from the people rigorous observances and ceremonies, which they themselves secretly ignored, and actually claimed exemption from if detected in their omission.
The severest denunciations that ever fell from it the Saviour’s lips were directed against those who, while making high pretensions to piety, secretly practiced iniquity. The religion of the priests, scribes, and rulers, like that of the modern Roman Church, consisted mainly in outward ceremonies, and was destitute of spiritual and practical godliness. God said unto Moses, Thou shalt bind these commandments of the Lord for a sign upon thy hand; and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. The Jews construed these words into a command that the precepts of scripture should be worn upon the person. They were accordingly lettered on cloth in a very conspicuous manner and bound about their heads and wrists. But wearing these precepts thus did not cause the law of God to take firmer hold of their minds and hearts, as God had designed. The precepts which should have purified their lives, and prompted them to righteous deeds, and acts of kindness and mercy, were worn as badges to attract observation, and give the wearers an air of piety and devotion which would excite the veneration of all beholders.”
P. 60, “If Christ were on earth today, surrounded by the religious teachers of the age who bear the titles of Reverend and Right Reverend, would he not repeat his saying to the Pharisees: ‘Neither be ye called master; for one is your Master, even Christ’? Many who assume these honorary titles are utterly devoid of the wisdom and true righteousness which they indicate. Too many hide worldly ambition, despotism, and the basest sins beneath the broidered garment of a high and holy office.”
P. 65, “In the days of Christ a superstitious regard was cherished for the tombs of the dead. This was frequently carried to the verge of idolatry, and vast sums of money were lavished upon their decoration. The same species of idolatry is carried to great lengths today, and especially by the Roman Church. But the Christian world at large are guilty of neglecting the widow and the fatherless, the poor and afflicted, to erect expensive monuments in honor of the dead. Time, money, and labor are not stinted for this purpose, while duties to the living are neglected.”
Revelation 3:18-19 KJV, “I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.”
Christ, the Son of God, denounced hypocrisy. May the Spirit of Christ leads us to do what is just, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with Him in our hearts and minds today.
Sincerely in the Blessed Hope.