Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen to me, everyone, and understand this.
Nothing outside a person can defile them by going into them. Rather, it is what comes out of a person that defiles them.”
After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about this parable.
“Are you so dull?” he asked. “Don’t you see that nothing that enters a person from the outside can defile them?
For it doesn’t go into their heart but into their stomach, and then out of the body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.)
He went on: “What comes out of a person is what defiles them.
For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder,
adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly.
All these evils come from inside and defile a person.”
Jesus left that place and went to the vicinity of Tyre. He entered a house and did not want anyone to know it; yet he could not keep his presence secret.
In fact, as soon as she heard about him, a woman whose little daughter was possessed by an impure spirit came and fell at his feet.
The woman was a Greek, born in Syrian Phoenicia. She begged Jesus to drive the demon out of her daughter.
“First let the children eat all they want,” he told her, “for it is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.”
“Lord,” she replied, “even the dogs under the table eat the children’s crumbs.”
Then he told her, “For such a reply, you may go; the demon has left your daughter.”
She went home and found her child lying on the bed, and the demon gone.
Then Jesus left the vicinity of Tyre and went through Sidon, down to the Sea of Galilee and into the region of the Decapolis.
There some people brought to him a man who was deaf and could hardly talk, and they begged Jesus to place his hand on him.
After he took him aside, away from the crowd, Jesus put his fingers into the man’s ears. Then he spit and touched the man’s tongue.
He looked up to heaven and with a deep sigh said to him, “Ephphatha!” (which means “Be opened!”).
At this, the man’s ears were opened, his tongue was loosened and he began to speak plainly.
Jesus commanded them not to tell anyone. But the more he did so, the more they kept talking about it.
People were overwhelmed with amazement. “He has done everything well,” they said. “He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak.”