Mark 7: 1 to 8; 14 to 15; and 21 to 23
Ordinary 22 Year B
1 1 Now when the Pharisees with some scribes who had
2 they observed that some of his disciples ate their meals
3 (For the Pharisees and, in fact, all Jews, do not eat
4 And on coming from the marketplace they do not eat
5 So the Pharisees and scribes questioned him, “Why do
6 He responded, “Well did Isaiah prophesy about you
7 In vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines human
8 You disregard God’s commandment but cling to human
14 He summoned the crowd again and said to them, “Hear me,
15 Nothing that enters one from outside can defile that person;
21 From within people, from their hearts, come evil thoughts,
22 adultery, greed, malice, deceit, licentiousness, envy,
23 All these evils come from within and they defile.”
1 [1-23] See the note on ⇒ Matthew 15:1-20. Against the Pharisees’ narrow, legalistic, and external practices of piety in matters of purification (⇒ Mark 7:2-5), external worship (⇒ Mark 7:6-7), and observance of commandments, Jesus sets in opposition the true moral intent of the divine law (⇒ Mark 7:8-13). But he goes beyond contrasting the law and Pharisaic interpretation of it. The parable of ⇒ Mark 7:14-15 in effect sets aside the law itself in respect to clean and unclean food. He thereby opens the way for unity between Jew and Gentile in the kingdom of God, intimated by Jesus’ departure for pagan territory beyond Galilee. For similar contrast see ⇒ Mark 2:1-⇒ 3:6; ⇒ 3:20-35; ⇒ 6:1-6.
2  Carefully washing their hands: refers to ritual purification.
3  Tradition of the elders: the body of detailed, unwritten, human laws regarded by the scribes and Pharisees to have the same binding force as that of the Mosaic law; cf ⇒ Gal 1:14.
Scripture texts in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised