Unlimited: How to Nullify the Word of God
Dec 22, 2020 1537
And he continued, “You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe your own traditions! For Moses said, ‘Honour your father and mother, and, ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.’But you say that if anyone declares that what might have been used to help their father or mother is Corban (that is, devoted to God)— then you no longer let them do anything for their father or mother. Thus, you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like that” (Mark 7:9–13, NIV)
In this passage, Jesus is in the middle of an intense discussion with the Pharisees. He called them hypocrites and that they ignore the commandments of God while holding onto human traditions and rules.
The law of God says that you should honour their father and mother. This is the law that God had written in the Bible.
But the Pharisees had an exception to this law, that they had concocted themselves. This was part of their oral law. If you didn’t want to support your parents in their old age, then you could declare your possessions “corban” which was effectively a vow that your possessions belonged to the God, and that one day they would be given to the temple. So, they couldn’t be used to help your parents.
That’s why Jesus says that, through many religious rules like this, the Pharisees tried to cancel out the Word of God.
Human traditions are much easier to follow than the commandments of God. Because they’re human rules, you don’t risk being unpopular if you follow them.
But Jesus taught that we should follow the Word of God and the Word of God alone.
And the worst human traditions are the ones that nullify, or cancel out, God’s Word. Like the practice of “corban,” these traditions are usually based on our own selfishness, rather than love for others, and the true keeping of God’s law.
– Eliezer Gonzalez
Eli’s Reflection: So, have you ever found yourself justifying in your own mind an action that you knew was wrong? Think about how you resolved that issue. Here’s the question: Did your decision agree with the Word of God?