Monday, April 3, 2017

Day 59: Clean Hands and Dirty Hearts

Leviticus 11, 12 and Mark 7:1-13

This section of Leviticus begins the rules of clean and unclean. Clean in this regard is speaking about ritual cleansing, not washed in the way we think of clean. Jesus also talks with people about being clean in Mark. Jesus explains that clean doesn’t mean the same thing as people have made it seem.

Leviticus 11:

This chapter begins the discussion of clean and unclean. We get a list of what animals, birds, bugs, fish etc. are clean. I find it very interesting that there is such a specific list of birds that are unclean. I’m also surprised that crickets, locust, and grasshoppers are clean.

Leviticus 12

This chapter enters the more personal of the clean and unclean standards. I am perturbed that there is a different level of ritual cleansing from a male verses a female child. 7 days unclean for male, 14 days for female. They can be cleansed 33 days after a male and 66 after a female. We are not given the reason for these differences.

Mark 7:1-13

Religious leaders complain to Jesus that his disciples do not eat with clean hands. This accusation does not mean that they forgot to scrub well, it refers to ritual washing to be done before eating. Jesus points out how hypocritical this line of thinking is. While the rules may say, honor mother and father, there were ways around them by declaring things a gift to God. If these things were to be used as a gift to God, usually after one’s death, they could not be used now to care for loved ones in need. Jesus says that hearts that would allow such actions are unclean.

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