Mark 7: The Problem of Sin
“It’s not my fault. I am a victim of my circumstances.” I don’t know how many times I have heard that phrase. Jesus did not seem to have much time for that type of thought in Mark 7.
Mar 7:14 And when he had called all the people unto him, he said unto them, Hearken unto me every one of you, and understand:
Mar 7:15 There is nothing from without a man, that entering into him can defile him: but the things which come out of him, those are they that defile the man.
Mar 7:16 If any man have ears to hear, let him hear.
In context, the religious leaders were upset that Jesus’ disciples were not following the handwashing rules prior to eating. That made the disciples defiled in their minds.
However, Jesus, in what seems to be a precursor of what God showed Peter later, indicated that it is not what you eat or put in your body that is the problem, but the real problem is the human heart itself. As he typically did, Jesus elaborated to the disciples later on.
Mar 7:21 For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders,
Mar 7:22 Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness:
Mar 7:23 All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.
I was thinking about how today we put a lot of weight on society to produce the kind of people that we want produced. However, I don’t believe that anyone can be conditioned to give up evil by a better society. In fact, all it takes is looking at what happened when society entirely eliminated religion from their culture (Soviet Union, China) to see what happens when secular society operates without restraint.
The problem with the world is the problem of sin, and sin comes directly from human beings like you and me. We do things that are wrong, and that is why Jesus came to earth. He came to redeem. Even though we are fallen, He came to transform people through the renewing of their minds.
The answer is not to make rules. The answer is not to make laws of man like the Pharisees were doing. The answer is to come back to Jesus and live by His teaching. Through transformation, one person at a time, society can change.