22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time.
Things kick off over ritual washing before eating, and there’s mention of the tradition of washing after returning from the shops because they’d been “contaminated” by the people they’d mixed with.
There are some interesting lessons to be learned from Jesus response.
He doesn’t dispute their distinction between clean and unclean. In fact he accepts it.
Clean and unclean stand for Heaven and hell, being fit for Heaven or fit for hell, creating Heaven or creating hell.
But Jesus has a very different understanding about what makes a person clean or unclean, fit for Heaven or fit for hell.
It’s what’s in your heart that decides whether you’re fit for Heaven or hell and he lists the way-markers on the road to hell which are actually qualities that abound, and apart from the obvious like murder, he includes fornication, adultery, theft, avarice, malice, deceit, envy, indecency, slander, pride, folly.
What happens if you put theft in Heaven? What happens if you put envy in Heaven? Avarice? Malice? Deceit? That’s not Heaven, that’s hell.
You can’t put theft in Heaven because it’ll create hell, no more than you can put envy or avarice, or malice, or any of the qualities listed by Jesus.
Can you see why these qualities are way-markers on the road to hell?
And can you see that it’s what’s in our hearts that determines how God receives us?
We want God to do it all for us but it’s not like that. It’s what’s inside us that determines our future.
Do not pay lip service to God. When you pray 🙏, pray from your heart. When you worship, worship from your heart. Otherwise it’s worthless.
Which begs the question: Mass and your heart; what’s the story there? If the worship of God is boring it’s because your heart is not in it!
He further advises:
The commandments and the law of God are more important than human tradition; more important than any human law.
Overall, he’s saying; if you truly loved God, if your heart was really in it, you’d know all this!