Matthew 15:1-20

Rules from the elders

1 Then Pharisees and legal experts came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said,
2 "Why are your disciples breaking the elders' rules handed down to us? They don't ritually purify their hands by washing before they eat."
3 Jesus replied, "Why do you break the command of God by keeping the rules handed down to you?
4 For God said, Honor your father and your mother, and The person who speaks against father or mother will certainly be put to death.
5 But you say, ‘If you tell your father or mother, Everything I'm expected to contribute to you I'm giving to God as a gift, then you don't have to honor your father.'
6 So you do away with God's Law for the sake of the rules that have been handed down to you.
7 Hypocrites! Isaiah really knew what he was talking about when he prophesied about you,
8 This people honors me with their lips, but their hearts are far away from me.
9 Their worship of me is empty since they teach instructions that are human rules."
10 Jesus called the crowd near and said to them, "Listen and understand.
11 It's not what goes into the mouth that contaminates a person in God's sight. It's what comes out of the mouth that contaminates the person."
12 Then the disciples came and said to him, "Do you know that the Pharisees were offended by what you just said?"
13 Jesus replied, "Every plant that my heavenly Father didn't plant will be pulled up.
14 Leave the Pharisees alone. They are blind people who are guides to blind people. But if a blind person leads another blind person, they will both fall into a ditch."
15 Then Peter spoke up, "Explain this riddle to us."
16 Jesus said, "Don't you understand yet?
17 Don't you know that everything that goes into the mouth enters the stomach and goes out into the sewer?
18 But what goes out of the mouth comes from the heart. And that's what contaminates a person in God's sight.
19 Out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adultery, sexual sins, thefts, false testimonies, and insults.
20 These contaminate a person in God's sight. But eating without washing hands doesn't contaminate in God's sight."