The two temptations of the faithful

Let us seek God with humility in our hearts and purity of our intentions.
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In today’s Gospel reading, Jesus warned His disciples about the two things that can corrupt the faithful:

“[Jesus] enjoined [his disciples], ‘Watch out, guard against the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.’” — Mark 8:15

The two temptations that can corrupt the faithful are the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod. 

The leaven of the Pharisees

As followers of Jesus, we can fall into spiritual pride like the Pharisees did. We, as His followers, may think of ourselves as better than others who do not know Him or follow Him. We may think that we know better than others.

Pride is the leaven of the Pharisees. They were threatened by Jesus Christ because they thought of themselves as better than others — especially in understanding God.

Like Jesus, let us remain meek and humble of heart. For He calls us not to judge others, but to love and serve God and our brethren.

The leaven of Herod

With our knowledge of Jesus’ teachings, with our understanding of Scripture, with our positions of authority in communities, other people may also be drawn to us. Because of our understanding of the faith, we may be put in positions of power and influence.

Power is the leaven of Herod. Herod was threatened by Jesus because he feared that Jesus would take away his power and influence in Galilee.

We are called to follow Jesus in order to seek God and not the power and the influence that following Him brings. Like Jesus, let us seek God and not the riches and powers of this world.

Let us pray the Psalm that David wrote:

“A clean heart create for me, God; renew within me a steadfast spirit.” — Psalm 51:12

Let us seek God with humility in our hearts and purity of our intentions.

 

P.S. I was reminiscing my childhood over the weekend that I couldn't help but have a Final Fantasy reference in my drawing today.