I know God doesn’t have human emotions, but Jesus sometimes experienced something very close to exasperation–part of His humanity, perhaps?
I wonder if we ever make Him want to throw up His hands in frustration?
Here’s one time that it happened:
Now they had forgotten to bring bread, and they had only one loaf with them in the boat. And he cautioned them, saying, “Watch out; beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.” And they began discussing with one another the fact that they had no bread. And Jesus, aware of this, said to them, “Why are you discussing the fact that you have no bread? Do you not yet perceive for understand? Are your hearts hardened? Having eyes do you not see, and having ears do you not hear? And do you not remember? When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you take up?” They said to him, “Twelve.” “And the seven for the four thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you take up?” And they said to him, “Seven.” And he said to them, “Do you not yet understand?”
It’s almost funny how off the mark the disciples were. Jesus mentioned the “leaven” of the Pharisees and of Herod, and they really thought He was talking about bread.
How could they be so obtuse?
They were hung up on the physical instead of the spiritual. They were in so many ways spiritually shallow and short-sighted, and Jesus struggled to get them to think more deeply.
As easy as it is to point fingers at the disciples, perhaps we’re all guilty of it.
Sometimes we get caught up in the day’s minutiae–what we’re going to eat, wear, and do. We think about 401(k)s and stock portfolios and getting the leaves raked and the trash taken to the road. After all, life’s ridiculously busy.
There’s nothing wrong with that kind of “leaven,” of course. Chores have to be finished, and to-do lists need to be conquered (or at least started).
But I think what frustrates Jesus is when we stay at this superficial level, when that’s our life’s focus, when we obsess over things that ultimately don’t really matter.
“Do you not yet understand?” He asked the disciples.
That’s probably a question we all need to consider.