Mark 7

Watch out for what comes from within. “For it is from within, from the human heart that evil intentions come: fornication, theft, murder, adultery, avarice, wickedness, deceit, licentiousness, envy, slander, pride, folly. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person” (vv. 21-22). As a result, they defile the family, community, churches, and nations.

Jesus called the religiously serious Pharisees as hypocrites. He knew their heart, their tradition and their own ideas. They were not able to impress Jesus. Because Jesus knew them inside out. We should be genuine followers of Christ.

What cometh out of the person, defiles them

Heart is the center of our inner being. It defines why we do what we do and we must protect it with careful evaluation of what goes in. And blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God( Math 5:8 ). A clean-slate heart that does not have ANY obsession for ANY form of selfish desires will be a blessing. I am wrestling with hatred, which is the extreme form of dislike.

Tradition of the elders (v. 5), something to look out for when we embrace cultural heritage!

“This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men”- risk of being born and raised in a christian family.

(v. 13) thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition … Following traditions is not wrong but when it sets aside the word of God it makes us hypocrites

(v.13) “You nullify the word of God by your tradition” we still follow our tradition in the name of enriching cultural Heritage. In our tradition, we have Anbin Virunthu (Madurai Side) or Asanam (Tirunelveli Side), the core concept is to give food to poor people living around you like anna dhaanam, but we nullify the concept by eating full NV meals by ourselves and take togo also. Verse 26: Jesus emphasized his strict commission was for Jews not for Greek women, a gentile. It is a discrimination against greek women not to heal her demonized young daughter. But for her faith, patience and perseverance, Jesus healed this Gentile believer beyond his Jewish Commission. But now in Galatians 3:28, “Neither Jews nor Gentile, neither slave nor free….. For you are all one in Jesus Christ”

Nothing outside a man can make him unclean. Uncleanliness is what comes out.
Uncleanliness is from inside.
Jesus nailed it.
Proverbs 4:23 Above all else, guard your heart for it is the wellspring of life.

Jesus focuses on inner person (soul). In old testament days, control was in the body. In new testament, control is through spirit. Ultimately, inner person/soul/core to be cleaned. Once Holy Spirit takes control, everything fall in line, over a period.

Curious or SeriousJesus did not say that you nullify the word of God by your tradition .. First that is impossible. No one can nullify God’s word.
Second it contradicts what we ourselves know. We have our own creeds and doctrines. No believer can reject them and live in a vacuum.
So Jesus is not against tradition or history per se but he is against tradition that is never questioned before making it our own. In other words, “.. Tradition you have received without questioning”.
Jesus is not against tradition but against mere acceptance without understanding. (Verse 19b – Mark inserts a note! Human tradition?)
For e.g. Notice the whole argument starts at v. 5 ( tradition of elders vs Jesus using Isaiah?).
Constantly asking the question where does this ritual come from is not just merely curious but serious.

It was such attitude that lead our reformation fathers to break through from dusty dungeons of medieval nonsense

(v.10) Honor your father and mother.
-But, Pharisees let go of the commands of God and holding onto human traditions such as Corban. They were misleading the people through their false teachings.
-Jesus, even when He was on the cross, obeyed to God’s commandment. He made sure His mother is taken care. (John 19:26-27) Jesus said to His mother “Here is your son”, and to the disciple “Here is your mother”.

“All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.” Others things that come from outside through temptations,trails, suffering cannot defile a person.

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