SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 5 (EGW)

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Chapter 12

1 (Matthew 16:6). Hypocrisy Is Like Leaven—[Luke 12:1 quoted.] ... Our Saviour presented before the people of that time the character of their sins. His plain words aroused the consciences of the hearers, but Satan's counter-working agencies were seeking for a place for their theories, to attract minds from the plainly spoken truth. As the great Teacher would speak impressive truth, the scribes and Pharisees, under pretense of being interested, would assemble around the disciples and Christ, and divert the minds of the disciples by starting questions to create controversy. They pretended that they wanted to know the truth. Christ was interrupted on this occasion as on many similar occasions. And He wished His disciples to listen to the words He had to say, and not allow anything to attract and hold their attention. Therefore He warned them, “Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.” They feigned a desire to get as close as possible to the inner circle. As the Lord Jesus presented truth in contrast to error, the Pharisees pretended to be desirous of understanding the truth, yet they were trying to lead His mind in other channels. 5BC 1121.9

Hypocrisy is like leaven or yeast. Leaven may be hidden in the flour, and its presence is not known until it produces its effect. By insinuating itself, it soon pervades the whole mass. Hypocrisy works secretly, and if indulged, it will fill the mind with pride and vanity. There are deceptions practiced now similar to those practiced by the Pharisees. When the Saviour gave this caution, it was to warn all who believe in Him to be on guard. Watch against imbibing this spirit, and becoming like those who tried to ensnare the Saviour (Manuscript 43, 1896). 5BC 1121.10

10. See EGW on Matthew 12:31, 32. 5BC 1121.11

16-21. See EGW on 1 Samuel 25:10, 11. 5BC 1121.12

35. See EGW on Matthew 25:7. 5BC 1121.13

48 (John 15:22). God's Tests Differ—God's test of the heathen, who have not the light, and of those living where the knowledge of truth and light has been abundant, is altogether different. He accepts from those in heathen lands a phase of righteousness which does not satisfy Him when offered by those of Christian lands. He does not require much where much has not been bestowed (Manuscript 130, 1899). 5BC 1121.14

50. See EGW on Matthew 26:42. 5BC 1121.15

51. See EGW on Matthew 10:34. 5BC 1121.16