Mark 7: The Evil Within

“What comes out of a man is what makes him ‘unclean.’ For from within, out of men’s hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and make a man ‘unclean.’ ” (Mark 7:20-23)

We were concerned yesterday when we read about Jesus asking if the disciples were “dull.” After this list, I’d take being called dull any time.

prickly_350In essence, Jesus’ response to the Pharisees was, “You’re worried about hand-washing and food when your hearts are full of all of this. These things are constantly erupting out of human beings every day – and the thing on the top of your list is what a guy had for lunch?”

Jesus’ point was that human beings are sinful from the inside out – and we give evidence of it every day. We need saving inside, not more polishing on the outside. We need to be born again and made new, not to pretend that following a few extra rules are going to fix our problem.

Washing our hands won’t change our evil hearts.

Think: Do you think people are basically good or basically evil? After you read this statement from Jesus, do you think he believes people to naturally be pretty good or naturally – without God transforming them – pretty evil?

Pray: Ask God to help you to understand the truth about the reality of human hearts with and without Christ.

Do: Read another analysis of the human heart on Jeremiah 17:9.