He replied, “Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written:
“‘These people honor me with their lips,
    but their hearts are far from me.
They worship me in vain;
    their teachings are merely human rules.’
You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to human traditions.”

Mark 7:6-8

There hasn’t been a better time in our lifetimes to look at the things we practice and examine why we do what we do. The choices we make, I feel, are for good reasons and with the best of intentions. Without looking prayerfully into the Scripture to decide what we ought to do, however, we will inevitably end up falling back on what we feel is right or what we know from having seen it done by those who came before us.

My challenge to the Church is that we look at the opportunities which are before us with no pretense. Let us learn all over again what it means to care for people and look for what they need in their lives so that we can fulfill that need more completely.

Just as Jesus challenged the shallow ministry of the leading religious people of His time, let us not be satisfied with keeping old traditions and hoping for new results.

Ethan Kirl

Originally Published September 7, 2020