And he said to them, “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written,
“‘This people honours me with their lips,
but their heart is far from me;
in vain do they worship me,
teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’
You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.”
And he said to them, “You have a fine way of rejecting the commandment of God in order to establish your tradition! For Moses said, Honour your father and your mother’; and, Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.’ But you say, ‘If a man tells his father or his mother, “Whatever you would have gained from me is Corban”’ (that is, given to God)— then you no longer permit him to do anything for his father or mother, thus making void the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And many such things you do.”
Comment: Jesus answers their accusation about failure to pass their traditional ‘hand washing’ test by making several very penetrating statements.
- Isaiah had challenged their forebears about lip service and traditional worship. Isaiah had called them failures, even so Jesus accuses them! They were accused of leaving God’s law for human tradition.
- Then Jesus avoids discussion of the hand washing (pretty insignificant) issue and hits hard at the God given commandment of child/parent relationships.
- They were escaping their filial responsibilities by claiming that they were using all their resources, including time, in God’s service and that excused them from their filial duties.
- ‘And that is not the only changes which you have legislated’, He states.
Prayer: Help me to have the right balance, as You see it, Lord, in carrying out the many aspects of living.