What Jesus Did! 'Food Won't Defile' — Mark 7:17-19

Friday, April 29, 2016

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.)
— Mark 7:17-19 NLT
Illustration of Mark 7:17-19 NLT —  Food goes into the stomach.

Key Thought

Once again, Jesus wants his closest followers to know that the issues of genuine faith focus on our heart-driven actions and not on the cosmetic ones. Luke and Mark add the powerful commentary about making all food clean—a truth that took some time to sink in among Jesus' early followers. The declaration is radical, not just because he declared all food clean, but because he wanted us to look at our hearts instead of having a perfunctory religious check off list of good deeds that never demanded anything of our hearts.

Today's Prayer

O God, please make my deeds helpful and genuine and my heart pure. I want to love you, and I want to love others, in deeds and truth as well as in words and speech. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • 1 John 3:16-18
  • 1 Samuel 6:16-17
  • Matthew 15:15-20


About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.