Matthew 12:1-14; Mark 2:23; 3:6; Luke 6:1-11

And the scribes and Pharisees watched him, whether he would heal on the sabbath day; that they might find an accusation against him. (Luke 6:7)


The scribes copied the Holy Scriptures. They preserved the oral law in written form and faithfully handed down the Old Testament. Ezra was a scribe during the Babylonian captivity of the Jews, and he was a godly man. The office of a scribe was a worthy one, but Jesus often rebuked the scribes of His day for having gone beyond the job of copying the Scriptures. They had a large volume of interpretations based on traditions. They added to the Scriptures and thus made “the word of God of none effect” (Mark 7:13).

The scribes became an independent company of interpreters of the law and leaders of the people. Even they sought to evade some of their own precepts. (Matt. 23:2-4.) They clashed with Jesus because He taught with authority and condemned the external formalism they fostered. (Matt. 7:28,29.) They persecuted Peter and John (Acts 4:3-7) and had a part in stoning Stephen. (Acts 6:12.) Although the majority of scribes opposed Jesus, some did believe. (Matt. 21:15.)

The scribes appeared to be holy outwardly, but their hearts were far from God. They missed Jesus, their Messiah, altogether. This can happen to us when we get caught up in studying and knowing all about the Bible and forget our personal intimacy with God. Our heads become filled with knowledge, and the Bible says “knowledge puffeth up” (1 Cor. 8:1). We become proud, judgmental, and demanding like the scribes.

Today let your heart be tender and receptive to the Holy Spirit as you read God’s Word. Worship Him as you study. Let your relationship with Him guide you.