Then there came to Jesus a party of Pharisees and Scribes from Jerusalem, who inquired,
"Why do your disciples transgress the tradition of the Elders by not washing their hands before meals?"
"Why do you, too," He retorted, "transgress God's commands for the sake of your tradition?
For God said, <`Honour thy father and thy mother';> and <`Let him who reviles father or mother be certainly put to death';>
but you--this is what you say: `If a man says to his father or mother, That is consecrated, whatever it is, which otherwise you should have received from me--
he shall be absolved from honouring his father'; and so you have abrogated God's Word for the sake of your tradition.
Hypocrites! well did Isaiah prophesy of you,
<"`This is a People who honour Me with their lips, while their heart is far away from Me;
but it is in vain they worship Me, while they lay down precepts which are mere human rules.'">
Then, when He had called the people to Him, Jesus said, "Hear and understand.
It is not what goes into a man's mouth that defiles him; but it is what comes out of his mouth--*that* defiles a man."
Then His disciples came and said to Him, "Do you know that the Pharisees were greatly shocked when they heard those words?"
"Every plant," He replied, "which my Heavenly Father has not planted will be rooted up.
Leave them alone. They are blind guides of the blind; and if a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into some pit."
"Explain to us this figurative language," said Peter.
"Are even you," He answered, "still without intellingence?
Do you not understand that whatever enters the mouth passes into the stomach and is afterwards ejected from the body?
But the things that come out of the mouth proceed from the heart, and it is these that defile the man.
For out of the heart proceed wicked thoughts, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, perjury, impiety of speech.
These are the things which defile the man; but eating with unwashed hands does not defile."
Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew into the vicinity of Tyre and Sidon.
Here a Canaanitish woman of the district came out and persistently cried out, "Sir, Son of David, pity me; my daughter is cruelly harassed by a demon."
But He answered her not a word. Then the disciples interposed, and begged Him, saying, "Send her away because she keeps crying behind us."
"I have only been sent to the lost sheep of the house of Israel," He replied.
Then she came and threw herself at His feet and entreated Him. "O Sir, help me," she said.
"It is not right," He said, "to take the children's bread and throw it to the dogs."
"Be it so, Sir," she said, "for even the dogs eat the scraps which fall from their masters' tables."
"O woman," replied Jesus, "great is your faith: be it done to you as you desire." And from that moment her daughter was restored to health.
Again, moving thence, Jesus went along by the Lake of Galilee; and ascending the hill, He sat down there.
Soon great crowds came to Him, bringing with them those who were crippled in feet or hands, blind or dumb, and many besides, and they hastened to lay them at His feet. And He cured them,
so that the people were amazed to see the dumb speaking, the maimed with their hands perfect, the lame walking, and the blind seeing; and they gave the glory to the God of Israel.
But Jesus called His disciples to Him and said, "My heart yearns over this mass of people, for it is now the third day that they have been with me and they have nothing to eat. I am unwilling to send them away hungry, lest they should faint on the road."
"Where can we," asked the disciples, "get bread enough in this remote place to satisfy so vast a multitude?"
"How many loaves have you?" Jesus asked. "Seven," they said, "and a few small fish."
So He bade all the people sit down on the ground,
and He took the seven loaves and the fish, and after giving thanks He broke them up and then distributed them to the disciples, and they to the people.
And they all ate and were satisfied. The broken portions that remained over they took up--seven full hampers.
Those who ate were 4,000 adult men, without reckoning women and children.
He then dismissed the people, went on board the boat, and came into the district of Magadan.