Weekly Devotion

Week of 6/12/23 by Pastor Jason
Matthew 15:17-20,“Do you not see that whatever goes into the mouth passes into the
stomach and is expelled? But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart ,
and this defiles a person. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery,
sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person. But to
eat with unwashed hands do not defile a person.” ESV
The Jews were so concerned about their traditions that they had replaced God’s word with that
they missed the reality of what God’s word actually said. They had replaced God’s commands
with things that they could do to make themselves “right with God” but their works always fell
short. This was so because they were trusting in their own self-efforts and not in God.
All of the rules and traditions regarding hand washing and forbidden foods are done away with
here by Jesus in this one verse. Jesus tells us what true defilement is. He tells us that
defilement (that sinfulness that separates us from God) doesn't come from without. It doesn't
come from foods we eat or not washing hands or things of this sort. It comes from within and is
the manifestation of a corrupt heart.
The heart, as John Calvin said, is a perpetual idol factory. A conveyor belt of sin, if you will.
And all these sins that Jesus mentions here are merely a manifestation of the darkness that
dwells in the heart of a fallen man. They are birthed there and nurtured and grown there into
their fullest expression-the speech that comes from our mouths, for out of the abundance of the
heart the mouth speaks.
These things that fill our hearts also manifest themselves in the things that we do because as
we think so shall we do.
Scripture tells us that all men are corrupted in this way. We find this truth in Romans chapter 1
and again in chapter 3, and in James chapter 1 among other places. Our traditions and
ceremonies, our good deeds and the things that we do or do not do; no sort of behavior
modification what soever, can change our corrupt hearts.
Only through the truth of the gospel can we see this problem dealt with and completely rectified.
Only in Jesus can our hearts be changed and we be reconciled back to the God our sins have
separated us from. Only through the indwelling go the Holy Spirit and HIs work in us through
the word of God can our corrupt hearts be renewed and purity come from our lips.
It is only through the gospel that this is possible.
Trust in Christ and your hearts will be made pure.