Matthew 15:1-20. Traditions vs. Devotion

Matthew 15:1-20

15 Then some Pharisees and teachers of the law came to Jesus from Jerusalem and asked,

       FROM JERUSALEM – (persistent evil)

“Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders?

       TRADITION (vs. LAW)

             Backstory :

                  1) Mosaic Law

                  2) continual disobedience

                  3) Babylonian Captivity. (Jer 29:13)

        “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity.[b] I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”

                  4) Pharisee’s and Scribes arise – specialized in regulations to keep the people on track

                   5) Regulations then became their hobby – and more and more were churned out, honor and honor!

                   6) MISHNA – the “ tradition of the elders “ committed to writing by A.D 200….

                         6 ORDERS or categories

                   – seeds, set feasts, women, damages, hallowed things, & cleansing.


                          Then subdivided by TRACTS – one of which was “ something about rinsing of hands “


They don’t wash their hands before they eat!”


Jesus replied, “And why do you break the command of God for the sake of your tradition?


For God said, ‘Honor your father and mother’[a] and ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.’[b] But you say that if anyone declares that what might have been used to help their father or mother is ‘devoted to God,’ they are not to ‘honor their father or mother’ with it. Thus you nullify the word of God for the sake of your tradition.

       DEVOTED TO GOD ( it’s a gift, been gifted, will be gifted – sorry about your luck!)

You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you:

“‘These people honor me with their lips,

    but their hearts are far from me.

They worship me in vain;

    their teachings are merely human rules.’[c]”


10 Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen and understand. 11 What goes into someone’s mouth does not defile them, but what comes out of their mouth, that is what defiles them.”

           LISTEN AND UNDERSTAND ( file that )

12 Then the disciples came to him and asked, “Do you know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this?”

         OFFENDED ( they are the authority you know)

13 He replied, “Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will be pulled up by the roots. 14 Leave them; they are blind guides.[d] If the blind lead the blind, both will fall into a pit.”

15 Peter said, “Explain the parable to us.”

16 “Are you still so dull?” Jesus asked them.

       ?   ( WHAAAAAAAAAT ! )

17 “Don’t you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? 18 But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. 19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. 20 These are what defile a person; but eating with unwashed hands does not defile them.”



missing the forest for the trees….. doing vs.being