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Mark 7:1-13

Background: Jesus had practised extensive teaching and healing activities in Galilee. The leaders of Jerusalem had heard stories about him and they sent a delegation to investigate the matter. Ritual washing was prescribed by the Law of Moses for those who had touched a leper, a deceased or blood. He who had become unclean because of these causes had to wash his clothes and his whole body. However, this text is about the traditional rules that had been added afterwards. Their purpose was to cleanse a Jew who had been in contact with a pagan or with items touched by a pagan, for example at a market. These rituals made it difficult for Jews associate with and be in the company of the Gentiles.

Verses 1-2

Verses 3-4

Verse 5.

Verses 6-9. The Pharisees and scribes were not considered as hypocrites but as true believers who never made any compromises with their faith.

Verse 10

Verses 10-13. According to a traditional rule, a son could hand over his future inheritance to the temple as a sacrificial gift already while his parents were alive. In that case it was not allowed to use the inheritance to support the parents.

Concluding questions

Glad tidings: Jesus honoured both his earthly parents and his Heavenly Father. Still, he had to endure the death sentence of those who curse their parents. It happened because we have not treated our parents as we should have.

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