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Mark 7:1-8

The Word of God

Now when the Pharisees and some of the scribes who had come from Jerusalem gathered around him, they noticed that some of his disciples were eating with defiled hands, that is, without washing them. (For the Pharisees, and all the Jews, do not eat unless they thoroughly wash their hands, thus observing the tradition of the elders; and they do not eat anything from the market unless they wash it; and there are also many other traditions that they observe, the washing of cups, pots, and bronze kettles.) So the Pharisees and the scribes asked him, "Why do your disciples not live according to the tradition of the elders, but eat with defiled hands?" He said to them, "Isaiah prophesied rightly about you hypocrites, as it is written, 'This people honours me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching human precepts as doctrines.' You abandon the commandment of God and hold to human tradition."

Mark 7:1-8
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

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    • The Pharisees and scribes who challenged Jesus ‘had come from Jerusalem’. They had come with authority. And all that they found to criticise was that the disciples had not washed their hands before eating! Jesus is not guilty of any wrongdoing, which makes his condemnation and death all the more sinister.
    • How often do we choose to be distracted by little things in order to avoid or admit to the real problem? Lord, help me to focus on ‘the one thing needed’ – your love for me, mine for you and for my neighbour! Let nothing get in the way of love.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

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    • It is good to have clean hands, cups and pots. But what really matters is my heart. Is my heart far from God? Do I give more time to keeping a clean house than a clean heart?
    • I pray for Church leaders. In these difficult times, they need a deep understanding of how God wants them to serve. May they not get lost in human traditions, but creatively reveal the compassionate face of God to the world.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

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    • Lord, it is different for me. I do not have to face the hundreds of ritual regulations with which the scribes had burdened their religion. But I can still be caught by foolish scruples, which have nothing to do with love, but come from a superstitious fear of regulations. Free my heart for joy and love.
    • Prayer is time given to God, and this is good in itself. But not the end of the story! Prayer-time introduces us to the side of ourselves which wants to honour God, and purifies us so that we honour him in the way we live as well as in the way we pray. We know whether prayer is fruitful or sincere by the way we live our lives.
    • Washing one's hands before meals would seem like a good idea. However what is at stake for the Pharisees is ritual purification, not merely hygiene. 'The traditions of the elders' were those injunctions and practices that the Pharisees added to the Law of Moses. Jesus is criticising his opponents for substituting human traditions for divine commandments.
    • As clean as the Pharisees hands were, they often used them to pick and point, to finger and accuse. I bring my abilities and talents before God and ask for blessing that I may use them for my growth, but not at the expense of others.
    • Jesus invites me to consider how I follow God in my heart and cautions me against being distracted by human traditions. I review my habits and patterns of activity, asking God to help me to recognise where they lead me to life.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

    Active
    Default
    • Lord, it is different for me. I do not have to face the hundreds of ritual regulations with which the scribes had burdened their religion. But I can still be caught by foolish scruples, which have nothing to do with love, but come from a superstitious fear of regulations. Free my heart for joy and love.
    • Prayer is time given to God, and this is good in itself. But not the end of the story! Prayer-time introduces us to the side of ourselves which wants to honour God, and purifies us so that we honour him in the way we live as well as in the way we pray. We know whether prayer is fruitful or sincere by the way we live our lives.
    • Washing one's hands before meals would seem like a good idea. However what is at stake for the Pharisees is ritual purification, not merely hygiene. 'The traditions of the elders' were those injunctions and practices that the Pharisees added to the Law of Moses. Jesus is criticising his opponents for substituting human traditions for divine commandments.
    • As clean as the Pharisees hands were, they often used them to pick and point, to finger and accuse. I bring my abilities and talents before God and ask for blessing that I may use them for my growth, but not at the expense of others.
    • Jesus invites me to consider how I follow God in my heart and cautions me against being distracted by human traditions. I review my habits and patterns of activity, asking God to help me to recognise where they lead me to life.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

    Active
    Default
    • Lord, it is different for me. I do not have to face the hundreds of ritual regulations with which the scribes had burdened their religion. But I can still be caught by foolish scruples, which have nothing to do with love, but come from a superstitious fear of regulations. Free my heart for joy and love.
    • Prayer is time given to God, and this is good in itself. But not the end of the story! Prayer-time introduces us to the side of ourselves which wants to honour God, and purifies us so that we honour him in the way we live as well as in the way we pray. We know whether prayer is fruitful or sincere by the way we live our lives.
    • Washing one's hands before meals would seem like a good idea. However what is at stake for the Pharisees is ritual purification, not merely hygiene. 'The traditions of the elders' were those injunctions and practices that the Pharisees added to the Law of Moses. Jesus is criticising his opponents for substituting human traditions for divine commandments.
    • As clean as the Pharisees hands were, they often used them to pick and point, to finger and accuse. I bring my abilities and talents before God and ask for blessing that I may use them for my growth, but not at the expense of others.
    • Jesus invites me to consider how I follow God in my heart and cautions me against being distracted by human traditions. I review my habits and patterns of activity, asking God to help me to recognise where they lead me to life.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

    Active
    Default
    • Lord, it is different for me. I do not have to face the hundreds of ritual regulations with which the scribes had burdened their religion. But I can still be caught by foolish scruples, which have nothing to do with love, but come from a superstitious fear of regulations. Free my heart for joy and love.
    • Prayer is time given to God, and this is good in itself. But not the end of the story! Prayer-time introduces us to the side of ourselves which wants to honour God, and purifies us so that we honour him in the way we live as well as in the way we pray. We know whether prayer is fruitful or sincere by the way we live our lives.
    • Washing one's hands before meals would seem like a good idea. However what is at stake for the Pharisees is ritual purification, not merely hygiene. 'The traditions of the elders' were those injunctions and practices that the Pharisees added to the Law of Moses. Jesus is criticising his opponents for substituting human traditions for divine commandments.
    • As clean as the Pharisees hands were, they often used them to pick and point, to finger and accuse. I bring my abilities and talents before God and ask for blessing that I may use them for my growth, but not at the expense of others.
    • Jesus invites me to consider how I follow God in my heart and cautions me against being distracted by human traditions. I review my habits and patterns of activity, asking God to help me to recognise where they lead me to life.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

    Active
    Default
    • Lord, it is different for me. I do not have to face the hundreds of ritual regulations with which the scribes had burdened their religion. But I can still be caught by foolish scruples, which have nothing to do with love, but come from a superstitious fear of regulations. Free my heart for joy and love.
    • Prayer is time given to God, and this is good in itself. But not the end of the story! Prayer-time introduces us to the side of ourselves which wants to honour God, and purifies us so that we honour him in the way we live as well as in the way we pray. We know whether prayer is fruitful or sincere by the way we live our lives.
    • Washing one's hands before meals would seem like a good idea. However what is at stake for the Pharisees is ritual purification, not merely hygiene. 'The traditions of the elders' were those injunctions and practices that the Pharisees added to the Law of Moses. Jesus is criticising his opponents for substituting human traditions for divine commandments.
    • As clean as the Pharisees hands were, they often used them to pick and point, to finger and accuse. I bring my abilities and talents before God and ask for blessing that I may use them for my growth, but not at the expense of others.
    • Jesus invites me to consider how I follow God in my heart and cautions me against being distracted by human traditions. I review my habits and patterns of activity, asking God to help me to recognise where they lead me to life.