Saturday, May 9, 2020

Daily Devotion: The Far-Away Heart

Bible Reading: Matthew 15:1-11

Key Verse: Verse 8 – “This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.

Key Words: but their heart is far from me

Jesus is actually quoting from Isaiah 29:13. The Lord called the scribes and Pharisees hypocrites. This is the most frightful word in Scripture. Nothing quite corresponds to it, but it did not have quite the meaning in that day that it does today. To us it is a scorching word, but in Jesus’ day it simply meant to answer back and was used of an actor in a play. It means that an actor would receive a cue and then answer back. Jesus accused the scribes and Pharisees of playing at religion.

The religious leaders were eager to have people go through the ceremony of washing their hands, but they ignored the condition of the heart, which was the important thing to God. The Pharisees were focusing on ritualism, not righteousness. They focused on being clean outward but not inward.

An example would be parents who say to their children, “You wash your hands before you come to the table,” but they pay no attention to what their children see on television, which is the thing that is damaging their heart. Oh, of course, children should wash their hands, but what is on the inside is far more important.

What to do:
✞ Have clean hands, but it’s more important to have a clean heart.

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