MONDAY, MARCH 28, 2011

“He replied, ‘Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: These people honour me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; Their teachings are merely human rules.’ You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to human traditions.” Mark 7:6-8


Jesus faced a lot of opposition in His lifetime. In this passage Jesus is responding to an accusation from some Pharisees who accused His disciples of not washing their hands according ‘to the traditions of the elders.’ This was a ceremonial washing that the people had added to the original Law. This is one of the most common examples of how the traditions and rituals of the people had become much more important than the spirit of the Law as God had intended.

Sometimes it can be difficult to discern our traditions from the basic commands that Jesus calls us to live out. This may be because our traditions are so ingrained into our history and belief and experience. However we should consider this. Did Jesus really have a problem with a culture that valued washing their hands? No. Jesus had a problem with a culture that could no longer tell the difference between the Law and traditions made to help follow the Law. Jesus had a problem with decreasing the value of God’s word for the sake of human tradition.


  • Praise God for who He is
  • Confess your sinfulness
  • Allow His Spirit to draw you near
  • Listen as He speaks to you


  • Pray that God helps us to understand what is His command and what is simple tradition
  • Pray God helps us to hold onto what has value, and let go of what contradicts, or takes away from His word


  • Thank God for hearing you
  • Trust that God is at work to accomplish His will


What’s happening around us?

The Working Centre is a non-profit, community-based, volunteer inspired venture that seeks to give individuals and groups access to tools and opportunities to become involved in the building of community projects in Kitchener-Waterloo and surrounding areas. Volunteer opportunities include providing kitchen help, food service and more for St. John’s Kitchen which feeds about 300 people each day, helping with sewing classes, computer repair, bicycle repair and more. As well, check out Queen Street Commons cafe and Worth a Second Look thrift shop which provide work experience for those who need it and raise funds for The Working Centre .