lent #4 — A Pharisees’ Sonnet

the law instructs, and keeps us from all wrong
these guiding words to keep me in straight lines
can these outward deeds rewrite my heart song
will these bonds bind my heart to his confines
inner thoughts, deepest heart betray me still 
what the world sees belies the life within
from the heart, defilement, my bitter pill 
no legal law can free me from my sin
outward perfection, inward corruption 
true transformation needs God’s redemption

— — — —

Inspired by Matthew 15:10–20. Most of the poems up til now have seen things from Peter’s perspective, or with Peter’s interactions with Christ in mind. In Matthew 15:15, Peter asks Jesus to explain the parable about what defiles a man. And although this is in the form of an English sonnet, looking carefully, you’ll notice that it’s 1 quatrain too short. I left that quatrain out to hopefully emphasize it’s incompleteness. The first quatrain talks about the law, and the talks about the need for inner transformation, and the couplet provides the solution. But the missing third quatrain should be the one on repentance. It’s what’s missing for many of people. Without repentance, the fullness of God’s grace is just a rhyming couplet.

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