Tradition! Tradition!Series: The Gospel of Mark
Majoring in the Majors
Every now and then, I get sidetracked onto something. Usually, it’s when I’m already onto a project and something else comes up. It’s frustrating and it usually causes my attention to wander. In these moments, often Abby will catch me and talk with me to refocus. It’s easy for me to miss the point of what I need to do when I’m chasing down other things that come up. Maybe some of you can relate.
In our story this morning, Jesus is trying to help the Pharisees, then the crowd, then the disciples understand what is the priority. The Pharisees were getting hung up on handwashing, a religious cleansing ritual common in their day (maybe that’s where the saying “cleanliness is next to godliness” came from ????). In the rush to accuse Jesus’ disciples, the Pharisees had missed the point. It wasn’t what and how someone ate; it was how they lived their life. Washing hands while refusing to take care of your needy parents (because you had “dedicated this money to God”) is majoring in the minors and hypocritical. There are other, bigger things in life that God cares about.
How about you? Are you getting hung up on the little things? It’s easy for us to get down in the weeds on issues, all while missing the greater need spiritually. Here’s a challenge: Let’s be more concerned about our heart than about our behavior. Our behavior will follow our hearts, but if our hearts are wrong, all we are is hypocritical. This hypocrisy will come out in what we object to and how others see our faith. We’ll be seen by the world as inconsistent, Pharisaical, and not worth our salt as followers of God.