Missing the Point
As you prepare to read the Bible today, thank God for his mercies and spend a moment asking for forgiveness.
Read Mark 7:14-23
 Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen to me, everyone, and understand this.  Nothing outside a person can defile them by going into them. Rather, it is what comes out of a person that defiles them.”   After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about this parable.  “Are you so dull?” he asked. “Don’t you see that nothing that enters a person from the outside can defile them?  For it doesn’t go into their heart but into their stomach, and then out of the body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.)  He went on: “What comes out of a person is what defiles them.  For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come-sexual immorality, theft, murder,  adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly.  All these evils come from inside and defile a person.” Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat makes one "unclean" and where does it come from?
How often do you get tangled up and misunderstand or mishear what is said? Once again, the disciples totally miss the point (17). What a relief to know that even people who watched and listened, were mentored by Jesus and learned with him, missed the point! I once heard a monk talk about his life in the monastery. “Every day I fall over. I get up again. I fall over. I get up again.” Jesus understood what normal people were like–and we’re normal, too. The biggest lesson, perhaps, is to recognize the danger in what comes out of us (20-23). That’s what needs attention, prayer, compassion and love. And it’s where we fall down every day and need to pick ourselves up–and be picked up in the arms of a loving Savior. What would be possible if we truly “ate” the Bible? Not literally–but properly digested one verse at a time until we were living it? What verse would you choose to eat? Mine is, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind” and, “Love your neighbor as yourself'” (Luke 10:27).
Is anything undesirable coming out of you? If so, ask for God’s help. What verse would you choose to “eat”?
Lord, I want to properly and inwardly “digest” Your Word each day so that it fills me and transforms me.