Epiphany 2022, Gospel of Matthew, Day 20 of 58

Gospel of Matthew, January 22, Day 20 of 58


Matthew 11:1-19


17 “We played the flute for you, and you did not dance;
   we wailed, and you did not mourn.” 



I found out through the following blog post Jesus alluded to one of Aesop’s fables:

Aesop lived in the 7th and 6th centuries BC, and was an Ancient Greek writer of fables. Jesus uses an extra-biblical source because that is what people of his day would understand. It reminds us that we can use pop culture to convey points about God’s kingdom.

I believe that Jesus is the flute player and John the Baptist sang the dirges figuratively as the blog post linked above shares. Jesus means that John warned of the wrath to come (sad songs), and Jesus celebrated the Gospel of salvation (happy songs). Many were responding, but many other people were not responding.


I feel that Jesus is calling me here to consider my emotional response to the Gospel. Am I so restrained in my emotions that I can’t worship God freely in joy and sadness? The Gospel should convict me to the point of tears — tears of sadness for the sin of the world and tears of joy for the deliverance that God offers through Jesus Christ.


Dear Jesus, sometimes I stuff my emotions down. This inhibits me experiencing the transforming power of your Holy Spirit. Free me from the chains of apathy to fully embrace your presence and power. In Your Holy Name I pray. Amen.

Image: The Young Flautist by Edward Manét, 1866, Musée d’Orsay

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