“You have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice, mercy, and faith” (Matthew 23:23).
Values and beliefs are not the same.
The Pharisees claimed to value the law. They professed to love God’s word, yet they also believed that they were the only ones who could correctly understand, interpret, and apply the Scriptures. This belief put them in conflict with Jesus who saw right through their hypocrisy. Examples abound. Their belief about the Sabbath overruled compassion for the needy. Sinners were shunned, and stones were made for throwing at those who violated their beliefs.
Conflict frequently results in the clash between values and beliefs.
Beliefs that elections were stolen, that masks are oppressive, that earth’s climate is or isn’t in danger, clash against the values of justice, compassion, and honesty. Distorted beliefs regarding sexuality disregard the values of life, dignity, and morality. As a result, society is polarized, laws are broken, and lives are shattered. The law becomes a weapon in the hands of whichever group has the most power.
Even churches are split because confusion about values and beliefs exists in the pulpits and the pews.
Jesus called this hypocrisy and condemned it completely.
He still does.