You May Know About Him, But Not Care Much

A second way to respond to Christmas is to be apathetic about it.

And assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet:

“And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.” (Matthew 2:4-6, ESV)

The second group of people who reacted to Jesus’ birth were the chief priests and scribes of the people. The chief priests and scribes were the religious elite of the day. The chief priests are the heads of the twenty-four orders of priests in Jerusalem. They are like the cardinals and archbishops today.

The scribes are the teachers of the law. The copied the Scriptures. They interpreted the Scriptures. They are like the Bible scholars of today.

I’d like to ask you some thought-provoking questions. Who are the religious elite of your church, your religion? Do they behave like the religious leaders of Jesus’ day?

Two things stand out about them. First, these religious leaders knew their Hebrew Bible. They knew where to find the prophecy of old. (READ Matt. 2:5-6 above.) They gave Herod the answer, quoting from Micah 5:2.

Second, they were loyal to Herod, and not God.[1] They served the agenda of Herod, not the agenda of God. They obeyed the will of Herod, not the will of God.

Does this not sound familiar? Down through church history, you will read about many popes, priests, and pastors who served the will of the king. They served the agenda of the government, but not God. All manner of religio-political abuses and persecution against non-conformists sprang from it. There was no separation of church and state at the time. Until the Baptists and many radical reformers insisted that there should be a separation.

These religious people knew about the coming Christ. But they did not join the wise men in their mission. They were not excited about looking for the Christ.

They knew about the prophecy. But they did not act on it. They did not care much about Christ. They did not come and see Him. They did not worship Him. They were uncaring, unmoved, and unresponsive.

The result of their uncaring attitude is that they refused to worship Him.

Thus, we learn that hearing God’s Word, but not doing God’s Word is the sin of apathy, the sin of indifference, the sin of an uncaring attitude towards Jesus. Note that the sin of apathy is not the sin of unbelievers who do not know Jesus. The sin of apathy is the sin of religious people who know about Jesus.[2]

Are you like these religious leaders? You have heard of the Good News about Jesus. You have heard of God’s Word. But you serve your agenda, instead of God’s agenda. You serve your will, instead of God’s will.

You have heard the call to trust Christ as your Savior. But you are cool to it.  You do not care much about Jesus. You are not interested to worship Him. You do not join these Christians who seek Him. You are not excited to go and worship Him.

But let me ask you—what is the use of knowing about Jesus in your head, but not in your heart? What is the use of knowing God’s Word, but not acting on it? What is the benefit of following your will, your philosophy, and your pride, when it will just lead you to destruction? What is the use of knowing about Jesus, but not love him?

If you do not care about Jesus, I urge you to ask for the grace of God to grant you repentance and a desire to come to Jesus!

[1] Craig S. Keener, Matthew (Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 1997), __.

[2] Keener, Matthew, __.


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