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15. Clean and Unclean

1Then there come to Jesus from Jerusalem Pharisees and scribes, saying, 2Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread. 3And he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God because of your tradition? 4For God said, Honor thy father and thy mother: and, He that speaketh evil of father or mother, let him die the death. 5But ye say, whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, That wherewith thou mightest have been profited by me is given to God; 6he shall not honor his father. And ye have made void the word of God because of your tradition. 7Ye hypocrites, well did Isaiah prophesy of you, saying,

8This people honoreth me with their lips;

But their heart is far from me.

9But in vain do they worship me,

Teaching as their doctrines the precepts of men.

10And he called to him the multitude, and said unto them, Hear, and understand: 11Not that which entereth into the mouth defileth the man; but that which proceedeth out of the mouth, this defileth the man. 12Then came the disciples, and said unto him, Knowest thou that the Pharisees were offended, when they heard this saying? 13But he answered and said, Every plant which my heavenly Father planted not, shall be rooted up. 14Let them alone: they are blind guides. And if the blind guide the blind, both shall fall into a pit. 15And Peter answered and said unto him, Declare unto us the parable. 16And he said, Are ye also even yet without understanding? 17Perceive ye not, that whatsoever goeth into the mouth passeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught? 18But the things which proceed out of the mouth come forth out of the heart; and they defile the man. 19For out of the heart come forth evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, railings: 20these are the things which defile the man; but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not the man.

21And Jesus went out thence, and withdrew into the parts of Tyre and Sidon. 22And behold, a Canaanitish woman came out from those borders, and cried, saying, Have mercy on me, O Lord, thou son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a demon. 23But he answered her not a word. And his disciples came and besought him, saying, Send her away; for she crieth after us. 24But he answered and said, I was not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 25But she came and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me. 26And he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children's bread and cast it to the dogs. 27But she said, Yea, Lord: for even the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters' table. 28Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it done unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was healed from that hour.

29And Jesus departed thence, and came nigh unto the sea of Galilee; and he went up into the mountain, and sat there. 30And there came unto him great multitudes, having with them the lame, blind, dumb, maimed, and many others, and they cast them down at this feet; and he healed them: 31insomuch that the multitude wondered, when they saw the dumb speaking, the maimed whole, and lame walking, and the blind seeing: and they glorified the God of Israel.

32And Jesus called unto him his disciples, and said, I have compassion on the multitude, because they continue with me now three days and have nothing to eat: and I would not send them away fasting, lest haply they faint on the way. 33And the disciples say unto him, Whence should we have so many loaves in a desert place as to fill so great a multitude? 34And Jesus said unto them, How many loaves have ye? And they said, Seven, and a few small fishes. 35And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the ground; 36and he took the seven loaves and the fishes; and he gave thanks and brake, and gave to the disciples, and the disciples to the multitudes. 37And they all ate, and were filled: and they took up that which remained over of the broken pieces, seven baskets full. 38And they that did eat were four thousand men, besides women and children. 39And he sent away the multitudes, and entered into the boat, and came into the borders of Magadan.

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Verses 10–20

Christ shows that the defilement they ought to fear, was not from what entered their mouths as food, but from what came out of their mouths, which showed the wickedness of their hearts. Nothing will last in the soul but the regenerating graces of the Holy Spirit; and nothing should be admitted into the church but what is from above; therefore, whoever is offended by a plain, seasonable declaration of the truth, we should not be troubled at it. The disciples ask to be better taught as to this matter. Where a weak head doubts concerning any word of Christ, an upright heart and a willing mind seek for instruction. It is the heart that is desperately wicked, Jer 17:9, for there is no sin in word or deed, which was not first in the heart. They all come out of the man, and are fruits of that wickedness which is in the heart, and is wrought there. When Christ teaches, he will show men the deceitfulness and wickedness of their own hearts; he will teach them to humble themselves, and to seek to be cleansed in the Fountain opened for sin and uncleanness.




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