Matthew 23:6

ESV and they love the place of honor at feasts and the best seats in the synagogues
NIV they love the place of honor at banquets and the most important seats in the synagogues;
NASB And they love the place of honor at banquets, and the seats of honor in the synagogues,
CSB They love the place of honor at banquets, the front seats in the synagogues,
NLT And they love to sit at the head table at banquets and in the seats of honor in the synagogues.
KJV And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,
NKJV They love the best places at feasts, the best seats in the synagogues,

What does Matthew 23:6 mean?

The motive behind the public image of the scribes and Pharisees is selfishness, says Jesus. They do their good deeds to be seen and applauded by others. The actions are good, in and of themselves, but are done to gain the approval of men. To be noticed for their religiosity, they make sure the required articles of worship they wear are oversized (Matthew 23:1–5).

Further, these religious leaders love being recognized for their religiosity, including special privileges. The most honored seats at banquets were those closest to the host. Similarly, the esteemed positions in the synagogue were probably those closest to the scrolls of the law, or the most visible. At another time, Jesus responded to some who were jockeying for the most honored seats at a banquet by telling the people this in Luke 14:8–11:
"When you are invited by someone to a wedding feast, do not sit down in a place of honor, lest someone more distinguished than you be invited by him, and he who invited you both will come and say to you, 'Give your place to this person,' and then you will begin with shame to take the lowest place. But when you are invited, go and sit in the lowest place, so that when your host comes he may say to you, 'Friend, move up higher.' Then you will be honored in the presence of all who sit at table with you. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted."
The Pharisees looked for ways to exalt themselves, rather than for ways to express humility.
What is the Gospel?
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