Hands can be dirty and the heart can be cleansed

Hands can be dirty and the heart can be cleansed

Mark 7: 14-23 “ Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen to me, everyone, and understand this. 15 Nothing outside a person can defile them by going into them. Rather, it is what comes out of a person that defiles them.” 17 After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about this parable. 18 “Are you so dull?” he asked. “Don’t you see that nothing that enters a person from the outside can defile them? 19 For it doesn’t go into their heart but into their stomach, and then out of the body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.) 20 He went on: “What comes out of a person is what defiles them. 21 For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. 23 All these evils come from inside and defile a person.”

Jesus is defending his disciples having not ceremonially washed their hands before eating.

It is difficult in our culture to grasp how important this teaching actually was.  What needed cleansing and healing wasn’t a person’s hands or mouth but their heart. Jesus lists 13 items that exist within us and which warrants a cleansing of those hearts.

You can have ceremonially clean hands but a defiled heart.  So what good is that?

A person can look great and acceptable on the outside but if the heart is bad then it is all a façade.

So don’t let people burden you with guilt and shame for something you are or are not doing, these are attacks from the outside and are burdensome.

But Jesus cleanses hearts today, the place where sinful practices are born.


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