John Wayne was a macho movie actor, but according to one biographer, he was not macho in real life. He criticized those who refused to fight in Vietnam but he refused to fight in World War II—so he could focus on his career; and he hated horses. His biographer says it was only his acting that gave him the persona of being macho. Maybe we can forgive John Wayne—since he was just an actor, but Jesus loudly condemned people who set themselves up as holy but did not practice what they preached. In Matthew 23 we read: “Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, ‘The teachers of religious law and the Pharisees are the official interpreters of the law of Moses. So practice and obey whatever they tell you, but don’t follow their example, for they don’t practice what they teach.’” He criticized them, not only for misleading people, but because He knew they would lead the charge to crucify Him. He then gave this sad lamentation, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones God’s messengers! How often I have wanted to gather your children together as a hen protects her chicks beneath her wings, but you wouldn’t let me. And now, look, your house is abandoned and desolate. For I tell you this, you will never see me again until you say, ‘Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the Lord!” We long for the day when all of God’s blood-bought children will embrace the Messiah as King of kings.
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