Today’s Gospel: Matthew 15:1-2, 10-14
The Pharisees treated human traditions as though they were scriptural. They interpreted rules and laws for morality according to their human traditions and judged a person’s holiness according to how well they kept these rules.
But Jesus did not judge holiness according to following the rules like the Pharisees. He placed value on spiritual morality and God’s purpose instead. He lived with his disciples as an example that what is in a person’s heart is the true barometer of holiness, not outward signs.
Jesus emphasized the importance of what is inside of us, in our hearts where sin originates, that makes us impure more so than what we come in contact with on the outside.
Jesus’ disciples were concerned that he was alienating the Pharisees, but Jesus explained the Pharisees were blind to true spiritual understanding. They were unable to lead and teach God’s people properly because they themselves could not see God’s truths or understand the real meaning of His words.
Do we sometimes place more importance on outward signs than what is inside? Do we work harder on making a good impression than striving to have a clean heart?
Lord Jesus, grant me a pure heart. Make me care less about what other people think of me outwardly. Help me to become a better disciple on the inside, kinder and more compassionate. Work in me so that Your light shines through to the outside as well. Amen.
Copyright 2014 Deborah Shelby