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Mark 7:18-23 meaning...

Mark 7:18-23 deals with the issue of what makes a person clean or unclean. In this passage, Jesus responds to a question from his disciples about why he does not follow the traditional Jewish laws about washing before eating.

In this passage, Jesus challenges the idea that external actions or rituals, such as washing before eating, can make a person clean or unclean. Instead, he argues that what truly makes a person unclean is what comes from within them - their thoughts, intentions, and actions.

Jesus begins by asking his disciples if they understand that what goes into a person from outside cannot defile them. He explains that food, for example, does not enter a person's heart, but rather goes through their digestive system and is eliminated. In this way, all foods are purified, regardless of whether they conform to Jewish dietary laws.

Jesus then goes on to say that it is not what goes into a person, but rather what comes out of them, that defiles them. He provides a list of sins that originate from within a person's heart, such as evil thoughts, sexual sins, murders, thefts, and pride. Jesus is saying that these things are what truly make a person unclean, not external actions or rituals.

This passage is significant because it challenges the traditional Jewish understanding of cleanliness and purity. According to Jewish law, there were many external actions and rituals that were required in order to maintain purity and avoid defilement. For example, one had to wash their hands before eating, and certain foods were considered unclean and forbidden.

Jesus' message, however, is that true purity comes from within. It is not enough to simply follow external rituals or laws; one must also have a pure heart and mind. In this way, Jesus is advocating for a more spiritual understanding of purity, one that goes beyond external actions and focuses on the inner life of a person.

Furthermore, this passage is significant because it emphasizes the universal nature of sin. Jesus' list of sins that come from within a person's heart is not specific to any one culture or time period. Instead, it speaks to the fundamental nature of human sinfulness and the ways in which we are all capable of doing evil.

Overall, Mark 7:18-23 is a powerful reminder that true purity and goodness come from within. External actions and rituals may be important, but they are not enough to make a person truly clean. It is only by cultivating a pure heart and mind that we can truly become the kind of people that God wants us to be.

Mark 7:18-23. “Don’t you perceive that whatever goes into the man from outside can’t defile him, because it doesn’t go into his heart, but into his stomach, then into the latrine, thus purifying all foods?” He said, “That which proceeds out of the man, that defiles the man. For from within, out of the hearts of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, sexual sins, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lustful desires, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, and foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.”