Understanding Matthew 7 and Matt 15 Many Christians and those who proclaim that the Christ did away with the law, love to run to these books to justify their unlawful eating habits. Here’s their favorite scripture and verse Matt 15:11 Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.
So let’s close the book and go eat our swine and shellfish now right??! No! With that understanding you may as well tell a crack addict, or a weed head or cannibal their justified in their actions! When you read these chapters in correct context and understanding you must first always remember Christ didn't come to change or do away with the Law or the prophets (prophecies of the old testament), till all things were fulfilled (Matt 5:17-18). Everything must happen in prophetic order. With that being said let’s move on to examining the chapters. Both cover the same issue, so we’ll just use Mark 7 to edify. Mark 7:1 Then came together unto him the Pharisees, and certain of the scribes, which came from Jerusalem. And when they saw some of his disciples eat bread with defiled, that is to say, with unwashen, hands, they found fault. For the Pharisees, and all the Jews, except they wash their hands oft, eat not, holding the tradition of the elders. And when they come from the market, except they wash, they eat not. And many other things there be, which they have received to hold, as the washing of cups, and pots, brasen vessels, and of tables. Honestly the first four verses should end the discussion. The Pharisees were known to keep and teach the law, so to even assume they were discussing Christ and the Disciples eating unclean food is absurd. Both parties kept the law, so what exactly were the defiled eating accusations regarding then? In verse 2 it tells you the Pharisees observed the Disciples eating without washing their hands, a practice in which the Pharisees deemed "defiled". In the law the sons of Aaron had to wash themselves before entering the tabernacle, eating or perform any duties of the congregation (Exodus 30). The topic of unclean food was never a dispute!! The Pharisees turned the law of the Sons of Aaron and the Levites into an entire custom and tradition of Israel! They held themselves in a higher estate as to say they were cleaner than others. Moving on later in Mark the 7th Chapter Christ rebukes the Pharisees for them upholding traditions, rather than the commandments of YHWH (vrs 6-9).
Many preachers and leaders of the Black and Hispanic community have falsely told our people tradition is mandatory and the law is done away with. Think about how many churches allow Christmas, New Years, Halloween, Idol worship, Easter, Valentine’s Day. The list goes on and on. As soon as we bring up the topic of keeping the commandments, every excuse known to man comes into play! Reading further down (Vrs 15-23) Yahawashi is metaphorically talking about how things outwardly that we absorb can't affect or cause one to sin such as eating with unwashed hands, but when one outwardly manifests actions of sin that’s when transgression arises. For instance, if you listen to certain types of music, your absorbing the vibration of the music the lyric’s, beats etc… But it’s not sin unto you or defiling you unless you act upon the spirit of what your listening to. Start calling women B's or participating in crime against your people, defiling your temple smoking weed etc...Now your defiled! Your soul has now been affected and what you absorbed or digested now has come out thru your actions! When you look up belly in the Greek (#2836 in your concordance) the clearest definition of what Christ was telling them was this " the innermost part of a man, the soul, heart as the seat of thought, feeling, choice". You always will know when Christ is speaking metaphorically and by parable when he says " if any man have ears to hear let him hear". It’s a mystery for the wise. He's not talking literal. Similar to when Peter was visited by the Spirit in Acts the 10th chapter. It had nothing to do with food! It was revealing his mission to go to the Gentiles of Israel (unclean). Also observe entering in the Greek in vrs 7:15 (#1531 in your concordance) it’s a "metaph. of affections entering the soul". That's why Christ got upset with the disciples for not being more spiritually discerned in vrs 18. Even when you check without (#1855 in your concordance) it means something outward. So nothing that's outward should make me sin and become undefiled, I can be around someone eating swine and it not make me want to eat it or any other abominable food or action. Remember the main way we sin or transgress is by our actions, all the sins Christ mentioned he said start from within (what we absorb or digest) and then they manifest in the physical.
The bottom line to the discussion is that eating with unwashed hands couldn’t make someone defiled or in transgression of the law. This was a tradition that the Pharisee’s tried to make equal with the laws of YHWH. Naturally we typically wash our hands when given the opportunity for health reasons, but in no way is someone defiled if for whatever reason they didn’t wash their hands before eating. For further understanding regarding the dietary law visit the link below.