Gsopel – 2/11/20 – Mark 7:1-13
When the Pharisees with some scribes who had come from Jerusalem
gathered around Jesus,
they observed that some of his disciples ate their meals
with unclean, that is, unwashed, hands.
(For the Pharisees and, in fact, all Jews,
do not eat without carefully washing their hands,
keeping the tradition of the elders.
And on coming from the marketplace
they do not eat without purifying themselves.
And there are many other things that they have traditionally observed,
the purification of cups and jugs and kettles and beds.)
So the Pharisees and scribes questioned him,
“Why do your disciples not follow the tradition of the elders
but instead eat a meal with unclean hands?”
“Well did Isaiah prophesy about you hypocrites,
as it is written:
This people honors me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me;
In vain do they worship me,
teaching as doctrines human precepts.
You disregard God’s commandment but cling to human tradition.”
He went on to say,
“How well you have set aside the commandment of God
in order to uphold your tradition!
For Moses said,
Honor your father and your mother,
and Whoever curses father or mother shall die.
Yet you say,
‘If someone says to father or mother,
“Any support you might have had from me is qorban”’
(meaning, dedicated to God),
you allow him to do nothing more for his father or mother.
You nullify the word of God
in favor of your tradition that you have handed on.
And you do many such things.”
I think most know how much I love my Catholic faith. It is what sustains me. In our faith we have many beautiful traditions that help me to worship more fully.
But I do fear that we Catholics, as a faith, will allow some traditions to become more important – to stand in the stead of a true worship of God.
I recognize my love of our traditions but I won’t let my love cause me to reject your worthiness on tradition. I will struggle with others’ lack of faith due to an adherence to traditions over the Word.
We must love God First and foremost and our brothers and sisters next. A love of a particular way of worshipping over either of those make us – in Jesus’ words – hypocrites. Tradition shouldn’t lead us – it should enhance our experience. Only God will lead us.
At least that’s what I heard Him say…