7
Some Pharisees and scribes criticized Jesus about his disciples disobeying the traditions of the elders. Jesus replied, showing that their attitudes and practices were mistaken.
Mark 7:1-23
One day some Pharisees and some men who teach the Jewish laws gathered around Jesus. They had come from Jerusalem to investigate him. 2-4 The Pharisees and all of the other Jews strictly observe the traditions that their ancestors taught. For example, they refuse to eat until they first wash their hands with a special ritual, especially after they return from buying things in the marketplace. They think that God will be angry with them if they do not do that, because some person or thing unacceptable to God might have touchedthem/the things they bought►. There are many other such traditions that they accept and try to obey. Specifically, they wash in a special way their cups, pots, kettles, containers, and beds in order that using these things will not make God reject them.
That day, those Pharisees and men who taught the Jewish laws saw that some of his disciples were eating food with hands that they had not washed using the special ritual. So they questioned Jesus, saying, “ Your disciples disobey the traditions of our ancestors! ◄You should not let them eat food if they have not washed their hands using our special ritual!/Why do you let them eat food if they have not washed their hands using our special ritual?► [RHQ]” Jesus said to them, “Isaiah rebuked your ancestors, and his words describe very well you people who only pretend to be good! He wrote these words that God said:
These people speak as if they honor me, but they [SYN] really do not think about honoring me at all. It is useless for them to worship me, because they teach only what people have commanded as if I myself had commanded them.
You, like your ancestors, refuse to do what God has commanded. Instead, you follow only the traditions that ◄others/your ancestors► have taught.” Jesus also said to them, “ You think [IRO] that you are clever in refusing to do what God commanded just so that you can obey your own traditions! 10  For example, our ancestor Moses wrote God's command, ‘Honor your fathers and your mothers’. He also wrote, ‘ The authorities must execute a person who speaks evil about his father or mother.’ 11-12 But you teach people that it is all right that people no longer must help their parents. You teach people that it is all right if people give their things to God instead of giving them to their parents. You allow them to say to their parents, ‘What I was going to give to you to provide for you, I have now promised to give to God. So I cannot any longer help you!’ As a result, you are actually telling people that they no longer have to help their parents! 13 And, by doing that, you disregard what God commanded! You teach your own traditions to others and tell them strongly that they should obey them And you do many other things like that.”
14 Then Jesus again summoned the crowd to come closer. Then he said to them figuratively, “All of you people listen to me! Try to understand [DOU] what I am about to tell you. 15-16 Nothing that people eat causes God to consider them to be unacceptable. On the contrary, it is that which comes from people's ◄inner beings/hearts► that causes God to reject them.”
17 After Jesus had left the crowd and then entered a house with the disciples, they asked him about the parable that he had just spoken. 18 He replied, “◄ I am disappointed that you also do not understand what it means!/Why can you not understand what it means?► [RHQ] ◄You ought to understand that nothing that enters us from outside can cause God to consider us unacceptable to him./Can you not understand that nothing that enters us from outside of us can cause God to consider us unacceptable to him?► [RHQ] 19 Instead of entering and ruining our minds/souls, it goes into our stomachs, and afterwards the refuse passes out of our bodies.” By saying this, Jesus was declaring that people can eat any food without causing God to reject them. 20 He also said, “It is the thoughts and actions that come from within people that cause God to consider them unacceptable to him. 21 Specifically, it is people's innermost being that causes them to think things that are evil; they act immorally, they steal things, they commit murder. 22 They commit adultery, they are greedy, they act maliciously, they deceive people. They act indecently, they envy people, they speak evil about others, they are proud, and they act foolishly. 23 People think these thoughts and then they do these evil actions, and that is what causes God to consider them unacceptable to him.”
Jesus went to the region around Tyre to be away from people, but they learned of it, and a woman came to ask him to expel an evil spirit from her daughter.
Mark 7:24-30
24 After Jesus and his disciples left Galilee district, they went to the region around Tyre. While he stayed at a certain house, he desired that no one know it, but people soon found out that he was there. 25 A certain woman, whose daughter had an evil spirit within her, heard about Jesus. At once she came to him and prostrated herself at his feet. 26 This woman was not a Jew. Her ancestors came from Greece country, but she was born in the region around Phoenicia town in Syria district. She pleaded with Jesus that he expel the evil spirit from her daughter. 27 But he wanted to see how strongly she believed in him. So, suggesting that he should help the Jews first and not the non-Jews whom some Jews called dogs [MET], he spoke to her saying, “First let the children eat all they want, because it is not good for someone to take the food the mother has prepared for the children and then throw it to the little dogs.” 28 But to show that she believed that non-Jews could also receive help from God [MET], she replied to him, “Sir, what you say is correct, but even the little dogs, which lie under the table, eat the crumbs that the children drop.” 29  Jesus said to her, “Because of what you have said, you have shown me that you believe in what I can do for you. So I will help you. Now you may go home, because I have caused the evil spirit to leave your daughter.” 30 The woman returned to her house and saw that her child was lying quietly on the bed and that the evil spirit had left.
When Jesus went back to Lake Galilee, some people brought a deaf-mute man to Jesus and asked him to heal the man, which he did.
Mark 7:31-37
31 Jesus and his disciples left the region around Tyre city and went north through Sidon city, then toward the east through the district of the Ten Towns, and then south to the towns near Lake Galilee. 32  There, people brought to him a man who was deaf and who could hardly talk. They begged Jesus to lay his hands on him in order to heal him. 33  So Jesus took him away from the crowd in order that the two of them could be alone. Then he put one of his fingers into each of the man's ears. After he spat on his fingers, he touched the man's tongue with his fingers. 34 Then he looked up toward heaven, he sighed because he was concerned for the man, and then in his own language he said to the man's ears, “Ephphatha”, which means, “Be opened {Open up}!”. 35 At once the man could hear plainly [MTY]. He also began to speak clearly because what was causing him to be unable to speak was healed {Jesus healed what was causing him to be unable to speak}. 36 Jesus told ◄ the people/his friends► not to tell anyone what he had done. But, although he ordered them and others repeatedly not to tell anyone about it, they kept talking about it very much. 37  People who heard about it were utterly amazed and were saying enthusiastically, “Everything he has done is wonderful! Besides doing other amazing things, he enables deaf people to hear! And he enables those who cannot speak to speak!”