Pharisees & woman nag Jesus

Matthew 15:1-28 MSG
(counting...)

What Pollutes Your Life

1-2After that, Pharisees and religion scholars came to Jesus all the way from Jerusalem, criticizing, "Why do your disciples play fast and loose with the rules?"

3-9But Jesus put it right back on them. "Why do you use your rules to play fast and loose with God's commands? God clearly says, 'Respect your father and mother,' and, 'Anyone denouncing father or mother should be killed.' But you weasel around that by saying, 'Whoever wants to, can say to father and mother, What I owed to you I've given to God.' That can hardly be called respecting a parent. You cancel God's command by your rules. Frauds! Isaiah's prophecy of you hit the bull's-eye:

These people make a big show of saying the right thing,

but their heart isn't in it.

They act like they're worshiping me,

but they don't mean it.

They just use me as a cover

for teaching whatever suits their fancy."

10-11He then called the crowd together and said, "Listen, and take this to heart. It's not what you swallow that pollutes your life, but what you vomit up."

12Later his disciples came and told him, "Did you know how upset the Pharisees were when they heard what you said?"

13-14Jesus shrugged it off. "Every tree that wasn't planted by my Father in heaven will be pulled up by its roots. Forget them. They are blind men leading blind men. When a blind man leads a blind man, they both end up in the ditch."

15Peter said, "I don't get it. Put it in plain language."

16-20Jesus replied, "You, too? Are you being willfully stupid? Don't you know that anything that is swallowed works its way through the intestines and is finally defecated? But what comes out of the mouth gets its start in the heart. It's from the heart that we vomit up evil arguments, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, lies, and cussing. That's what pollutes. Eating or not eating certain foods, washing or not washing your hands—that's neither here nor there."

Healing the People

21-22From there Jesus took a trip to Tyre and Sidon. They had hardly arrived when a Canaanite woman came down from the hills and pleaded, "Mercy, Master, Son of David! My daughter is cruelly afflicted by an evil spirit."

23Jesus ignored her. The disciples came and complained, "Now she's bothering us. Would you please take care of her? She's driving us crazy."

24Jesus refused, telling them, "I've got my hands full dealing with the lost sheep of Israel."

25Then the woman came back to Jesus, went to her knees, and begged. "Master, help me."

26He said, "It's not right to take bread out of children's mouths and throw it to dogs."

27She was quick: "You're right, Master, but beggar dogs do get scraps from the master's table."

28Jesus gave in. "Oh, woman, your faith is something else. What you want is what you get!" Right then her daughter became well.


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