Unclean

Matthew 15:1-28; Ephesians 4:29-32

 

Jesus’ definition of “unclean” and the Pharisees idea of uncleanliness were different. As always, the Lord goes much deeper than outward reform- He aims for the heart. Jesus says our heart response in life, our thoughts, come out in the way we speak.

Even if we speak appropriately in public and have all the right answers, the Lord knows the inner man. He knows are thought life. Sooner or later what is suppressed will burst out in angry speech, low grumbling, or something else with devastating consequences. The longer we go unchecked in our attitude, we lose sensitivity to the Holy Spirit leading us. The heart calcifies under such conditions.

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Our hearts and speech are so intertwined that James writes special caution concerning the power of the tongue (James 3). It can be a means of great poison or great healing but it begins with the diagnosis of our hearts. Jesus unveils the hypocrisy of the Pharisees by mercifully teaching them, His disciples, and also us, the real meaning of “unclean”. We are all unclean, in need of the Savior to wash us through. God gives us time now to repent and come to Him. Are you washed with the blood of Christ or left unclean?

 

Grace upon grace,

April

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