Today's Devotions

12/6 Matthew 15:11

11 it is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but what comes out of the mouth; this defiles a person."


While much of the world is hoping to have anything to eat, the developed nations are obsessed with eating healthy foods. The Jews had numerous food laws regarding what they could eat, along with superstitions that evil could enter your body through defiled food, utensils, or unwashed hands. They were partly right in that germs can make one sick. However, germs and evil are very different things.

Jesus said that what comes out of the mouth is what defiles a person. He went on to explain that evil thoughts, murder, adultery, immorality, theft, false witness and slander all come from the within. Acting on the evil desires of the heart is what defiles man. All those evils are in the heart of every man and woman, but acting on them is defiling. Jesus was trying to help them see that the religious ritual of washing hands before eating had nothing to do with becoming evil. Evil starts within and works its way out if you allow it.

The danger of defilement is from within, not from without. That which tempts us from without is only tempting when it corresponds to a desire already in our wicked hearts. The Proverbs tell us to keep our heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life (Proverbs 4:23). We don't need to look outward for contaminating evil nearly as much as we need to look inward and see where our heart is going astray.

Consider: We are often upset about evil in the world around us while forgetting to examine our hearts for evil within. It would be a healthy spiritual practice to ask the Lord to reveal to you if your heart is going astray in some area.


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