MARK - CHAPTER 7 - TRADITIONS BROKEN
MARK – CHAPTER 7 – TRADITIONS BROKEN
Tuesday Morning Bible Study
January 31, 2023, the Year of Our Lord
Pastor Carolyn Sissom
This chapter is the beginning of the separation between the ceremonial law and the traditions of the Old Testament; and the New Covenant of Christ’s Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. Within 3-1/2 years of Jesus’ death, the Temple in New Jerusalem will cease to be the vehicle of God’s redemptive work.
Jeremiah 31:31-32: Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah---not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt…
The chapter begins with Pharisees and scribes traveling 100-miles from Jerusalem to Galilee to pick a quarrel with Jesus.
Mark 7: 1-5: Then the Pharisees and some of the scribes came together to Him, having come from Jerusalem. When they saw some of His disciples eat bread with defiled, that is, with unwashed hands, they found fault. For the Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they wash their hands in a special way, holding the tradition of the elders. When they come from the marketplace, they do not eat unless they wash. And there are many other things which they have received and hold, like the washing of cups, pitchers, copper vessels, and couches. The Pharisees and scribes asked Him, “Why do Your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat bread with unwashed hands?
It is certainly good hygiene to wash hands before eating, and no harm to it; but they placed religion in it. They interposed their authority and commanded all to do it or else be excommunicated. This they kept up as a tradition of the elders and a rule of the rabbis.
In Jewish demonology, the plunging of the hands in water got rid of Shibbeta, and evil spirit which sat upon the hands at night. It was considered to be a female spirit which brings croup to people, particularly children, who do not wash their hands in the morning.
Mark 7: 6-9: Jesus answered and said to them, Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: “This people honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. In vain they worship Me; teaching as doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men---the washing of pitchers and cups, and many other such things you do. All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition.
The Christian church is not made up of the Jewish traditions, but many substitutes of non-essentials traditions make some Christian groups as ridiculous as the Pharisees.
If anything is condemned by some specific law in Scripture, we should leave it alone; but if it is something not definitely condemned, let each person answer to God and his conscience as to what he allows.
Christ argues with the Pharisees concerning the authority by which this ceremony was imposed. It appears he is only speaking to the Pharisees because in verse 14, he calls the multitude to forward to himself lest they should hear the Pharisees’ offense.
Mark 7: 10-13: For Moses said, “Honor your father and your mother; and He who curses father or mother, let him be put to death.” But you say, “If a man says to his father or mother, “Whatever profit you might have received from me is Corban” ---(that is, a gift to God), then you no longer let him do anything for his father or his mother, making the word of God of no effect through your tradition which you have handed down. And many such things you do.
Note that Jesus calls the writings of Moses, The Word of God.
John 1:17: For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. Rom. 9:31-32: But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, has not attained to the law of righteousness. Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumbling stone. 10:4: For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believes.
God commands children to honor their parents, not only by the law of Moses, but by the law of nature. It is the duty of the children, if their parents are poor, to support them according to their ability. According to the Law of Moses, children are worthy to die that curse their parents. How much more so if they starve them? According to the traditions of the elders, if they swear by the Corban, that is by the gold of the temple, and their gift upon the altar, then they are not obligated to care for their parents. By this wicked vow, the tradition of the elders discharges them from the obligation.
Mark 7: 14-17: When He had called all the multitude to Himself, He said to them, “hear Me, everyone and understand. There is nothing that enters a man from outside which can defile him; but the things which come out of him, those are the things that defile a man. If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear. When He had entered a house away from the crowd, His disciples asked Him concerning the parable.
Jesus rebukes the disciples (again). In chapter 6, Christ sent them forth two by two with authority to preach the gospel, heal the sick and cast out unclean spirits. They have seen Him perform miracle after miracle, but their minds do not yet comprehend the New Covenant of Christ’s Kingdom compared to the Law of Moses of which they have been born into and lived.
Mark 7: 18-23: Jesus said to them, are you thus without understanding also? Do you not perceive that whatever enters a man from outside cannot defile him; because it does not enter his heart, but his stomach, and is eliminated, thus purifying all foods? It is what comes out of a man, that defiles a man. For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within and defile a man.
I think I can be safe to clarify here that Jesus is speaking of food and drink that is not poisonous.
Finish J. Dake calls these 13 sins that damn the soul. Under the sin of evil-thoughts, he lists 24 examples of evil-thought-sins. Under an evil-eye, he lists seven-sins.
1. Jesus reproves them for their hypocrisy in pretending to honor God, when really, they had no such design in their religious observances. They honor me with their lips, but really their heart is far from God (Isa. 29:18; Mat. 15:8).
2. Jesus reproves them for placing religion in the inventions and injunctions of their elders and rulers. They taught for doctrines, the traditions of men.
\3. Jesus reproves them for laying aside the commandments of God. They were entrusted to expound the law, and to enforce it. Under pretense of using that power, they violated the law, and dissolved the bonds of it. \
Gal. 2:21: I do not frustrate the grace of God; for if righteousness came by the law, then Christ is dead in vain. Gal. 3:10-12: for as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse; for it is written, “Cursed is every one that continues not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them. No man is justified by the law in the sight of God. It is evident: for, the just shall live by faith. The law is not of faith.
Jesus’ ministry in Galilee is now concluded. He has made a clear declaration of His freedom from many of the regulations of Judaism. This termination with the traditions of Judaism is a prelude to his second journey into Gentile territory. This time he proceeds, not eastward, but northward to the vicinity of Tyre. These next verses open the power of the Gospel to the Gentiles.
Mark 7: 24: From there, He arose and went to the region of Tyre and Sidon. He entered a house and wanted no one to know it, but He could not be hidden.
What a contrast between Jesus and the ministries today, who are looking for larger crowds, and more pre-eminence. God help us all.
But Jesus could not be hidden.
Another tradition is to be broken.
Mark 7: 25-30: For a woman whose young daughter had an unclean spirit heard about Him, and she came and fell at His feet. The woman was a Greek, a Syro-Phoenician by birth, and she kept asking Him to cast the devil out of her daughter. Jesus said to her, Let the children be filled first, for it is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the little dogs. She answered and said to Him, “Yes, LORD, yet even the little dogs under the table eat from the children’s crumbs.” He said to her, for this saying, go your way; the devil has gone out of your daughter. When she had come to her house, she found the devil gone out and her daughter lying on the bed.
An unclean spirit often refers to sexual sins. Strong’s uses the word Daimonion which K.J.V. and Strong’s interpreted as devil, but N.K.J.V. interpreted as a demon.
The dialogue between Jesus and the Syrian-Phoenician woman is very telling:
1. The greatest blessing, we can ask for those who are demon possessed is to break the power of Satan, that is the power of sin off their souls.
2. Jesus knew this woman’s faith was strong, but for our benefit, he tries it and puts it to the stretch. This is a trying of the Gentile faith to carry the Gospel of Christ.
3. He is also making it clear to his disciples that the gospel of His Kingdom is for the Gentiles.
Let the children first be filled; let the Jews have all the miracles given to them, and let not that which was intended for them, be thrown to those who are not of God’s family and who are as dogs in comparison to them. But there was a but: Let the children first be filled. There is mercy in reserve for the Gentiles. The Jews had already begun to be surfeited with the gospel of Christ. Some of them had desired him to depart out of their coasts. “Yes, Lord, I known it is the children’s bread, but the dogs were never denied the crumbs and they are allowed a place under the table. I ask not for a loaf, no nor for a morsel, only for a crumb.”
He gave it to her! She got the whole loaf! Not only to her, but to the entire Gentile race who will receive Him as Savior. Her faith and humility pleaded not only for her daughter, but for us as well. The humility of this woman brings shame on the arrogance and hypocrisy of some in the Gentile Church of the 21st century.
Mark 7:31-35: Again, departing from the region of Tyre and Sidon, He came through the midst of the region of Decapolis to the Sea of Galilee. They brought to Him one who was deaf and had an impediment in his speech, and they begged Him to put His hand on him. He took him aside from the multitude, and put His fingers in his ears, and He spat and touched his tongue. Then, looking up to heaven, He sighed, and said to him, Ephphatha, that is, be opened. Immediately his ears were opened, and the impediment (string) of his tongue was loosed and he spoke plainly.
This healing is not recorded in any of the other three gospels.
Notice those attending him did not ask Jesus to heal him, only to put His hand on him, thus honoring Jesus to do as He was pleased to bring glory to God. Jesus took him aside from the multitude. He used acts with action to do this cure. He put his fingers in his ears and used His saliva to touch his tongue. Jesus looked to heaven, but he also directed his patient who could see to look to heaven. Jesus was conveying to him his healing was through divine power.
It is important to note that King James reads, “string of his tongue was loosed.” “desmos” a band, chain or shackle of a prisoner; an impediment or disability; band, bond, string. (Lk. 8:29); Acts 16:26; 22:30). Also used as a binding by a Satanic power (Lk. 13:16). The string of the tongue was supernaturally cut and also the demon that bound the tongue was cast out.
Did his sigh express sadness, relief or tiredness. I choose relief. Perhaps sadness at the demon that had caused this hardship.
This is another proof of Christ’s being the Messiah. It was foretold that by his power, the ears of the deaf should be unstopped, and the tongue of the dumb should be made to sing. (Isaiah. 35:5-6).
There are various means of administering Divine healing:
(1) Laying on of hands;
(2) The spoken word;
(3) The elders anoint with oil and pray;
(4) The prayer of faith.
(5) The Lord’s Supper;
(6) point of contact;
(7) handkerchiefs and aprons;
(8) casting out devils;
(9) gifts of healings;
(10) word of knowledge.
I would hope we would not limit the Holy Spirit in healing miracles; nor give the glory to Satan. Satan does not heal. He brings sickness and death. Healing can be instantaneous, gradual or progressive, conditional, and unconditional.
Mark. 7:36-37: Then he commanded them that they should tell no one, but the more He commanded them, the more widely they proclaimed it. They were astonished beyond measure, saying, “He has done all things well. He makes both the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.
Some say it was Christ’s humility that he desired for the people to go and tell no man. Yes, He was humble, but I am inclined to believe He was able to accomplish more in the short period of time He was allotted for His ministry away from the crowds. But, then again, there is a time for solitude and a time to go out. We have been greatly blessed and protected at Eastgate Church. But, if we are to fulfill our call to the Harvest, we too will seek our times of solitude. The prophets continue to decree that our congregation will be part of the Harvest.
Next week, we will study the feeding of the 4000 Gentiles. This again is a prophetic sign of the full-power of the Gospel being given to the Gentile nations. The 5000 were Jews. They were fed with five loaves and two fish with twelve baskets full left over. With the 4000, there were seven loafs and a few small fish. There were seven baskets left over. These are prophetic numbers. Twelve is the number of government and seven is the number of perfection.
Carolyn Sissom, Pastor
Eastgate Ministries Church www.eastgateministries.com
Scripture from N.K.J.V. – I entered into the labors of Finis J. Dake and Matthew Henry. Comments and conclusions are my own and not meant to reflect the views of those who I entered into their labor.
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