This is our twentieth study. Please click HERE for an intro to this study.
29 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You build tombs for the prophets and decorate the graves of the righteous. 30 And you say, ‘If we had lived in the days of our forefathers, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’ 31 So you testify against yourselves that you are the descendants of those who murdered the prophets.
By decorating the graves of the prophets, that indicates to me that they were trying to put on a show of self-righteousness, and even trying to cover up their own sins. And when they said, ‘If we had lived in the days of our forefathers, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets,’ they were not being honest. John MacArthur has stated, “[This was] a ridiculous claim to self-righteousness when they were already plotting the murder of the Messiah (cf. Jn. 11:47-53).”
It is better to face up to the sins of your descendance and not try to say that you would have lived better. I think we should instead be like Daniel who confessed before God the sins of his people (Dan 9:5-6)—even though he himself was innocent.