Now, Mark 7:1-13 "The Pharisees and some of the scribes gathered around Him when they had come from Jerusalem, and had seen that some of His disciples were eating their bread with impure hands, that is, unwashed. (For the Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they carefully wash their hands, thus observing the traditions of the elders; and when they come from the market place, they do not eat unless they cleanse themselves; and there are many other things which they have received in order to observe, such as the washing of cups and pitchers and copper pots.) The Pharisees and the scribes *asked Him, “Why do Your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat their bread with impure hands?” And He said to them, “Rightly did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written:
‘This people honors Me with their lips,
But their heart is far away from Me.
‘But in vain do they worship Me,
Teaching as doctrines the precepts of men.’
Neglecting the commandment of God, you hold to the tradition of men.” He was also saying to them, “You are experts at setting aside the commandment of God in order to keep your tradition. For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘He who speaks evil of father or mother, is to be put to death’; but you say, ‘If a man says to his father or his mother, whatever I have that would help you is Corban (that is to say, given to God),’ you no longer permit him to do anything for his father or his mother; thus invalidating the word of God by your tradition which you have handed down; and you do many things such as that.”
Really look at those passages. Take in the message of what Jesus is saying. Look back at the part from the Old Testament.
When we who have truly come to Christ, our eyes are opened for the first time ever.
Interestingly, to me, a movie quote comes to mind. The only similarity is in what's being said, I am not at all saying any other Spiritual connotation to that movie.
In 'The Matrix' Morpheus is looking down on a Neo that is looking up at him asking why his eyes hurt. Morpheus responds with "It's because you have never used them.".
When we come to Christ our Spiritual eyes are opened for the first time. Whereas before we only had a dark description of sin and what it was, now we see just what it is.
But things can still be twisted towards those who believe too. Satan tried for 40 days to tempt Jesus. To twist Scripture. Look at what Satan achieved with the so-called Jewish leaders. That mentality still exists today in the modern Church. You have the very same things happening. Teaching as doctrines the precepts of men. Dressing a certain way. Having to read only a specific version of the Bible. Having to pray a specific way. Only on certain days you worship, the others you can do what you want. The list goes on.
None of this really comes as a surprise to those who really are seeing with Spiritual eyes. 2 Timothy 4:3 "For the time will come when they will not hard sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires,"
People will always seek people who will agree with them.
In this day and age to not agree means you are being intolerant. Within the Church you can be branded as one who's not a true follower of Christ.
Something hit me this morning concerning that part from the Old Testament. This actually marks the SECOND time someone not traveling with or living with the people of Israel were spoken to by the Lord. It's obvious by his reputation Balaam was indeed in some level of communion with God. God did speak to him and apparently through him. The other was Melchizedek.
With open eyes comes a realization of true reality. You wake up in the morning and leave behind your slumber. Your eyes adjust to your surroundings. Once they do you can navigate your world. Until they do, it's not safe. You, in essence, await for truth to be revealed before acting.
In Scripture, it's what we are told to do Spiritually. Seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness.
Every single person Jesus healed had their Spiritual eyes opened. Many outright dropped down to worship Him.
We really mess things up when we try to squint through the Spiritual eyes we know are working properly, working perfectly.
God isn't limited by anything but the obedience of His people. But as Scripture shows if we don't obey, He WILL find someone who will. Then on that day we face Him we will be explaining why we didn't.
Today, open your eyes. Look at your world around you with what God wants to do in mind. Talk with Jesus. See what it is He had for you today. I guarantee you that He does. Use your eyes, live as though today you could be meeting Him at any moment. Truth is, that's also what Scripture says.
The hymn Living for Jesus.
Living for Jesus a life that is true, striving to please him in all that I do,
yielding allegiance, glad-hearted and free, this is the pathway of blessing for me.
O Jesus, Lord and Savior, I give myself to thee, for thou, in thy atonement, didst give thyself for me;
I own no other master, my heart shall be thy throne, my life I give, henceforth to live,
O Christ, for thee alone.