My friend Tim and I read our Bibles together daily and he sent me the following observations about our reading of Luke 20:
45 While all the people were listening, Jesus said to his disciples,46 “Beware of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around in flowing robes and love to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces and have the most important seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at banquets.47 They devour widows’ houses and for a show make lengthy prayers. These men will be punished most severely.”
So, it won't be the "obvious sinners", but those who convince people that they are not sinners who will be punished most severely. It reminds me of the verse a few chapters back "But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, 'God, have mercy on me, a sinner." Our Lord is repulsed by sin, but even more is He repulsed by the sin we try and disguise. It says in Hebrews 4:13, "Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account", and so a man's deception about his own sins takes his dishonor to God into a whole new level - showing that it is more important to that man that his sins be hidden from his peers than confessed to God.
I love when people begin seeing the connections between different passages and using the fullness of God’s recorded Word to inform their reading of any particular part of God’s Word they happen to be reading that day.
Tim’s synopsis of the passage is awesome!
Denying what is real in order to obtain that which is fleeting is evidence of disrespect and dishonor to our Father.
Jesus paid for them all with His own blood, not so that we could pretend in front of people that we don’t sin, but so that in His presence we could stand forgiven freed to confess sin that is already paid for completely.
People may lose respect for you if they know how sinful you are.
But you will not lose the salvation and freedom you will receive from Christ in breaking the chains of slavery and deception that so easily entangle those who refuse to bring to the light the darkness within themselves.