15 Nothing outside a person can defile them by going into them. Rather, it is what comes out of a person that defiles them.”
After confronting the Pharisees for their hypocrisy, he clarifies that “defiled” things come from the inside/out not from the outside/in.
Man made rules typically address behaviors. However Jesus address the heart behind the behavior. Eating with dirty hands isn’t an issue with Jesus. However a heart that is tainted with darkness and evil is an issue. The cross didn’t wash our hands. Instead, it washes our hearts. A few things…
-Good behavior isn’t a bad thing. However assuming good behavior makes me whole is a lie. I can follow all the man made rules and my heart be far from God.
-Whenever I notice darkness in my behavior I must look deeper than simply modifying it or cleaning it up. I must address the heart behind it. Why is my heart leading me towards disobedience and compromise. Behind every compromising decision is a compromised heart.
-People don’t change from the outside /in. They change from the inside/out. Jesus didn’t try to get people to clean up and then see their lives changed. He changed their heart and then their behavior began to follow suite.
Father, I need you to keep working on my inside. Whenever I am disappointed by my behavior or the behavior of someone else I must realize that there is a deeper issue. The inside needs an adjustment. The actions will follow. Work on my inside and the inside of those I lead and influence.