The concept of internal affairs is an American term that refers to a division of a law enforcement. This government agency investigates incidents and plausible suspicions of lawbreaking and professional misconduct attributed to officers. When a cop goes bad, tempted by evil, this department digs deeper to find the source of corruption. Depending upon who is entangled within this web, investigations continue until the truth is unveiled.
Now after Jesus had spoken, a Pharisee asked Him to have lunch with him. He went in [the Pharisee’s home] and reclined at the table [without ceremonially washing His hands]. 38 The Pharisee noticed this and was surprised that Jesus did not first ceremonially wash before the meal, Luke 11:37-38.
During a conversation detailed within the gospel of Luke, Jesus introduces a different kind of internal affairs. While the Pharisee who invited Jesus over to his home lunch concentrates on following rigid Jewish ceremonial laws, Jesus focuses on engaging those seated around the table. As Jesus reclines at a table, likely asking open ended questions, a member of the politically correct scolds Jesus for not washing his hands prior to eating. In the passage below, Jesus doesn’t hold back how he feels. Rather, Jesus introduces the spiritual meaning to internal affairs, working on the inside out.
But the Lord said to him, “Now you Pharisees clean the outside of the cup and plate [as required by tradition]; but inside you are full of greed and wickedness. 40 You foolish ones [acting without reflection or intelligence]! Did not He who made the outside make the inside also? – Luke 11:39-40.
Pharisees exist today in different forms, individuals who are controlling. manipulative and perfectionists. You will find these personality types in various avenues of life. These people focus on material matters, trying to make their department, group and peers look good on the surface. According to Jesus, these individuals are living in denial, not dealing with the heart of the matter. Spiritual internal affairs must begin with your heart. You can put on a happy face for a while, but sooner or later conviction, discontentment and frustration will bring you to your knees. May you take the advice of Jesus by starting an internal investigation of your soul so that God will create in you a clean heart and restore a steadfast spirit within you, Psalm 51:10.
by Jay Mankus