Unwashed Hands

Honoring God with their lips, but their hearts are far from God.

So easy to see outward appearances and the actions people take, but so much harder to see what is in people’s hearts. God sees it all.

When the Pharisees questioned Jesus about His followers and why they didn’t wash their hands before eating as per the Jewish custom, Jesus pointed to them as hypocrites. Complaining about not washing hands while invalidating God’s commands.

Jesus pointed to the commandment to honor your father and mother. The Pharisees said that whatever benefit you might have received from the child is now a gift or offering committed to the temple. Did the pharisees turn God’s commandment around to a monetary gift?

Breaking God’s commandment into a quick and easy monetary gift. Instead of the intent of God’s commandment, the pharisees devalued the commandment to something that lines the pockets of the priests. No wonder Jesus made a point of this when they complained about the disciples not washing their hands.

From Easton’s Bible Dictionary:

a Hebrew word adopted into the Greek of the New Testament and left untranslated. It occurs only once (Mark 7:11). It means a gift or offering consecrated to God. Anything over which this word was once pronounced was irrevocably dedicated to the temple. Land, however, so dedicated might be redeemed before the year of jubilee (Lev. 27:16-24). Our Lord condemns the Pharisees for their false doctrine, inasmuch as by their traditions they had destroyed the commandment which requires children to honour their father and mother, teaching them to find excuse from helping their parents by the device of pronouncing “Corban” over their goods, thus reserving them to their own selfish use.

From Smith’s Bible Names Dictionary:

an offering to God of any sort, bloody or bloodless, but particularly in fulfillment of a vow. The law laid down rules for vows, (1) affirmative; (2) negative. (Leviticus 27:1; Numbers 30:1) … Upon these rules the traditionists enlarged, and laid down that a man might interdict himself by vow, not only from using for himself, bur from giving to another or receiving from him, some particular object, whether of food or any other kind whatsoever. The thing thus interdicted was considered as corban . A person might thus exempt himself from any inconvenient obligation under plea of corban. It was practices of this sort that our Lord reprehended, (Matthew 15:5; Mark 7:11) as annulling the spirit of the law.


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