Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin…
It scarcely admits of a question, but that every sin which was ever committed upon the earth, is traceable, in the first instance, to a sin of omission. At a certain point of the genealogy of that sin, there was something of which it is not too much to say that if it had been done that sin would have been cut short. And the very earliest cause of that sin (whether you are able to discover a root or not) lay, not in anything we did, or said, or thought, but in that which we might have done, and did not do; or, might have said, and did not say; or, might have thought, and did not think. Every sin lies in a chain, and the first link is fastened to another link. For instance, that first sin committed after the Fall — Cain's fratricide — was the result of anger; that anger was the result of jealousy; that jealousy was the result of an unaccepted sacrifice; that unaccepted sacrifice was the result of the absence of faith; and that absence of faith was the result of an inattentive ear, or a heart which had grown silent towards God .... As you uncoil a sin, you have been surprised to find what a compound thing that is which, at first sight, appeared single. You have gone on, finding the germ of one sin in the seed of another sin, till you could scarcely pursue the process because it stretched so far; but, if you went far enough, you found at last that some neglect was the beginning of it all.
(J. Vaughan, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
WEB: "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint, dill, and cumin, and have left undone the weightier matters of the law: justice, mercy, and faith. But you ought to have done these, and not to have left the other undone.