Archbishop Foley Beach
Passage: Matthew 15:1–15:20
A Recap of Sunday’s Sermon preached by Archbishop Foley Beach
Preaching Text: Matthew 15:1-20
In this text, religious leaders challenge Jesus. The presenting issue was the disciples’ neglect of certain ceremonial washings. Jesus responds by exposing their hypocrisy concerning the treatment of parents. They were making a big deal about their own tradition while violating the 5th commandment about honoring father and mother. They were living according to tradition, not according to the Word of God. Traditions are not bad in themselves, but they must help us follow God’s Word. Jesus shows that this is really a matter of the heart. He teaches that we are not defiled by what we eat, but rather by what comes out of our mouths because our words reveal our hearts (v. 18). Jesus offers a list of common sins in verse 19. Evil thoughts, Murder, Adultery, Sexual immorality (which includes same-sex sex, premarital sex, post-marital sex, pornographic sex), Theft, False Witness (telling what is untrue to hurt someone), and Slander (telling what is true to hurt someone).
To determine what is in your heart, simply look at what comes out of you. “If the chalice gets knocked, what is in the chalice is going to come out.” Life has a way of knocking the chalice over for us and exposing our sin. Thankfully, the gospel can change a heart.
A heart that is close to God will want to follow God’s commandments.
We can’t do so perfectly, but keeping our hearts close to God results in desire to please him. What affects the soul (and our relationship with God) is not what we put in the body, but what we allow in our hearts.
Thanks to Jesus Christ, through repentance and faith in him, we can first experience forgiveness of these sins, then receive power to live a different way. In John 7:37 Jesus teaches that such belief will result in Living Water flowing out of our hearts.
Our traditions can help us yield to the Word of God. If our hearts are saturated with the Word of God, we will build up our heart to live a pure and holy life.
Taking it home: Discuss at home which “traditions” (think habits) do you have that help your heart align with God’s Word?