Reading from Matthew 15:1-15
Breaking the Traditions:-
Jesus our Lord, was cornered by the Pharisees, and Scribes , they are the people who think that they know everything under the sky, very knowledgeable in theology and about the traditions of Jewish custom , and most of the time they consider themselves as very righteous and look down at others, judging them that they were not as a good as they themselves.
The main trait of their personality is that they do never entertain the teachableness–Isaiah 50:4 He awakens me morning by morning He awakens My ear to listen as a disciple (as one who is taught)That is teachable spirit of the disciple . .They never tries to learn but they have big mouths to speak. Their ears never like to listen. So they have big questions to shoot at our Lord. One of the questions was a complaint, indeed, about his disciples.
They found fault with them that they are breaking many traditions of their religion, and one of them was ‘not washing the hands and feet before meals” –“Why do your disciples do not wash hand before meals?” ==Jesus did not answer them straight instead answered them with another question, like, “Why do you break the God’s commandment because of your tradition?”
What is important Commandment or Tradition?
Which should be given more importance? Traditions change from time to time and place to place. But God’s commandment is stable and should never be broken. The critics were surprised first, and so, the Lord reminded them about the important commandment, ” Honour thy parents, and if any one speak evil of them they would be put to death” –But instead of honouring them they are so crude and carouse in treating them and posing themselves as of great spiritual people and by saying, “Mother and Father, we do not care what you want , in fact we are more responsible to church rather than you, because we need them more, they will come and help us in our need, and so why should we should give what you want? God is first to us, we will honour Him more than you. You are selfish and you want us to give whatever you want, we do not care what you say and ask for. We need to be in church and God is first to us, so therefore we will give to church what you asked us to give. , our reward is in heaven, not you” —Jesus asks them what their responsibility towards their parents is? You are saying that you need not honour the parents at all. You have traditions and you are giving more importance to such tradition. This is terrible. He made the point very clearly and He scolded them saying they give importance outward rituals but do not worship God in spirit, He added one more thing, saying” Hey your traditions are like this’ what you eat what not to eat, when to eat, where to eat, and so one and so on, why you are so conscious of diet, and food items to eat, you research and say this food is good that food is not good, you invent so many methods of preparing food in such and such way and you say if others do not follow your instructions, you would say that they are spoiling the diet chart or traditions. “What you eat will not defile you, no never.” This is terrible cliché’ of present generation, food conscious, Keto, Veeramachaneni, Khadhar valli Manthena etc, People drawn by food, what to eat what not to eat, organic or inorganic, where to buy how to prepare, morning to evening this is the priority of their lives. They spend hours together for food preparation, hoping to be great in health wise, to gain more years to life, worrying which food is going to defile their system.
Poor guys, these are wasting their precious time with God and His commandments, therefore the Lord told them, Do worry about the things that come out of your mouth, these things would ruin you and defile you,”
In all things of nature there is something marvellous-Aristotle
The Word of God tells us, that,” Everything” is good for food; anything God created is good to eat if you take it with thanksgiving. The question here is , eat whatever is kept before, or served on your platter, or available to eat, do not bother about them too much, you can eat everything if only you take them by thanking God.
The first lesson I learned in spiritual life. That day my mom cooked potato curry and served hot rice and curry, in those day I did not like to eat potato curry, as usual I want to make much hue and cry over the curry, but , then I learned to pray in those days so first I bowed down my head and prayed the Lord , thanking for food, and I saw the curry and I shut my mouth, I did not like to say anything about it, any negative remark. I questioned myself, “Did not I pray and thank the Lord for the food which was served on my plate, and how can I make any negative remark about it, that I do not like to eat? Since then I never said that I don’t eat this food ‘ Whatever is served on my plate I learned to take it thanks giving.
Another incident happened in my university days, we were doing combined study in ladies hostel. Maharanipet hostel of Andhra University, Vishakaptnam, India, in the lunch time we friends ate it in hostel room and I insisted on giving thanks to God for the food and prayed over the food, though there were some unbelievers in our group, there. After an half hour there was an uproar all over the hostel, The girls were crying louder as many of them had vomiting of the food, later come to know one of the girls got the head of the lizard, another one the tail, so on. Its food poisoning, they have severe stomach ache, they were taken to KGH, but none of us did get sick. We did not have any symptoms of the food poisoning. —-The Lord blesses the food if we take it with thanksgiving.
Jesus was telling us the same. After the disciples met Jesus later, that, People believe all nonsense spoken by everyone and many people are deceived by the teachings of deceitful spirits, and demons,–whose conscience is seared–these people teach that some food God created are not good to eat. And that they should abstinent from such and such foods, and make big list. Whatever food you eat is made holy if you eat with thanksgiving. They would never tell you do so. But they are experts in telling the list of “not to eat foods” Everything God created is good and nothing to be rejected Tim 4:1-16
He added what is coming out of your mouth that defiles you.What is coming out of mouth?
The disciple met Jesus once again in a secluded place to learn more of Him to clarify their doubts, to bring all the news they heard outside. .This time they brought the news of Pharisees and Scribes,” Lord Do you know how much they were offended by your words? “His answer was “Hey leave them alone” you dont bother about such people, do not try to think of such people.” They are blind guides, and they are there to be uprooted, because the Father God did not plant them. They are confusing masters, they are there to confuse others they are blind, and lead others who are blind. If you want to be blind and led by those blind they will lead you into a pit. Who can help such people knowingly following the blind?
But as usual Peter insisted to enquire “What is that goes into the mouth defiles?” he was very sure about that information, because in Acts 10:9-16
14v.”I have never eaten anything impure or unclean”
Jesus replied, “Do not worry about what you eat, if you’re pray over it.” But worry about what is coming out of your mouth” So Peter asked Him what is that defile that comes out of our mouth” Jesus said,”Hey dull head!! Do not you know that whatever that comes out of the mouth, comes out of the heart? What all that goes in the mouth goes to the stomach? It will be digested in the stomach and eliminated outside. But whatever comes out of the mouth spoils you and others. They are evil thoughts, killing instinct, adulteries, sexual immoralities, thefts, false testimonies, blasphemies –Be careful about it
“What you think may not be right, until and unless you check with the Word of God do not try to impose on others”