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Spiritually Unclean! - Mark 7:6-8

Jesus answered, "You are all hypocrites. Isaiah was right when he spoke about you. Isaiah wrote, 'These people say they honor me, but they don't really make me an important part of their lives. Their worship of me is for nothing. The things they teach are only rules that people have made.' You have stopped following the commands of God. Now you follow the rules you got from other people." (ERV) Full Text

Key Thought

We try to be nice in today's politically correct environment. However, some truth—God's truth—is just simply the real truth. When people fake their religious devotion or when they bend God's Word to justify the way they want to live, then it is hypocrisy no matter who they are. Jesus hates hypocrisy. Jesus will not let folks sink into hypocrisy and pretend with them that they are righteous. So what do we do with these harsh words from Jesus? First, we need to ask ourselves if we are guilty of the sin Jesus condemns! After all, in one way of viewing things, aren't we the religious ones today? If we are guilty, then let's change and put our lives where our mouths are! Second, we need to not be so bashful with each other when hypocrisy creeps into our lives. We need to lovingly and humbly help each other identify and correct any hypocrisy. Hypocrisy destroys our hearts and ruins the influence of Jesus' people on the world!


Today's Prayer

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O God, always righteous and yet boundlessly merciful, please forgive me. I confess that I have sometimes sinned because I'm weak and have stumbled. However, there have been times when I've been criticizing others for their sin, yet allowed myself to do what I know was not right. Correct me gently and humble me tenderly so I can serve you without hypocrisy. In Jesus' name. Amen.


Today's Verses in Context


Some Pharisees and some teachers of the law came from Jerusalem. They gathered around Jesus. The Pharisees and teachers of the law saw that some of Jesus' followers ate food with hands that were not clean. ("Not clean" means that they did not wash their hands {in the way the Pharisees said people must}.) The Pharisees and all the Jews never eat before washing their hands in this special way. They do this to follow the teaching given to them by their great people that lived before them. And when the Jews buy something in the market, they never eat it until they wash it in a special way. They also follow other rules from their people that lived before them. They follow rules like the washing of cups, pitchers, and pots. The Pharisees and teachers of the law said to Jesus, "Your followers don't follow the rules given to us by our great people that lived before us. Your followers eat their food with hands that are not clean. Why do they do this?" Jesus answered, "You are all hypocrites. Isaiah was right when he spoke about you. Isaiah wrote, 'These people say they honor me, but they don't really make me an important part of their lives. Their worship of me is for nothing. The things they teach are only rules that people have made.' You have stopped following the commands of God. Now you follow the rules you got from other people." Then Jesus said to them: "You think you are smart! You ignore the commands of God so that you can follow your own teachings! Moses said, 'You must honor (respect) your father and mother.' Then Moses also said, 'Any person that says bad things to his father or mother must be killed.' But you teach that a person can say to his father or mother, 'I have something I could use to help you. But I will not use it to help you. I will give it to God.' You are telling that person that he does not have to do anything for his father or mother. So you are teaching that it is not important to do what God said. You think that it is more important to followthose rules you teach people. And you do many things like that." Jesus called the people to him again. He said, "Every person should listen to me and understand what I am saying. There is nothing a person puts into his body that makes him wrong. A person is made wrong by the things that come from him." Then Jesus left the people and went into the house. The followers asked Jesus about this story. Jesus said, "You still have trouble understanding? Surely you know that nothing that enters a person from the outside can make him wrong. Food does not go into a person's mind. Food goes into the stomach. Then that food goes out of the body." (When Jesus said this, he meant that there is no food that is wrong for people to eat.) And Jesus said, "The things that come from a person are the things that make that person wrong. All these bad things begin inside a person, in the mind: bad thoughts, sexual sins, stealing, murder, adultery, greed, doing bad things to people, lying, doing things that are morally wrong, jealousy, saying bad things about people, proud boasting, and foolish living. All these evil things come from inside a person. These things make a person wrong. "

Mark 7:1-23 (ERV)

 

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Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.


 
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So, both the person that came for advice and the prophet that gave an answer will get the same punishment.Ezekiel 14:10 (ERV)

Later, the Jewish leaders sent some Pharisees and some men from the group called Herodians to Jesus. They wanted to catch Jesus saying something wrong. The Pharisees and Herodians went to Jesus and said, "Teacher, we know that you are an honest man. You are not afraid of what other people think about you. All men are the same to you. And you teach the truth about God's way. Tell us: Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar ? Yes or no? Should we pay taxes, or should we not pay taxes?" But Jesus knew that these men were really trying to trick him. Jesus said, "Why are you trying to catch me saying something wrong? Bring me a silver coin. Let me see it." They gave Jesus a coin and Jesus asked, "Whose picture is on the coin? And whose name is written on it?" They answered, "It is Caesar's picture and Caesar's name." Then Jesus said to them, "Give to Caesar the things that are Caesar's. And give to God the things that are God's." The men were amazed at what Jesus said.Mark 12:13-17 (ERV)

So don't do anything to hurt {other people}, don't lie, don't do things to fool people, don't be jealous, don't say bad things about people. Put all these things out of your life.1 Peter 2:1 (ERV)

 

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