Words, Holiness, and a Canaanite Woman

Matthew 15:7 And you are nothing but show-offs! Isaiah the prophet was right when he wrote that God had said,
8 “All of you praise me with your words,
but you never really
think about me.
9 It is useless for you to worship me,
when you teach rules
made up by humans.”

Ouch.

Matthew 15:18 But the words that come out of your mouth come from your heart. And they are what make you unfit to worship God.19 Out of your heart come evil thoughts, murder, unfaithfulness in marriage, vulgar deeds, stealing, telling lies, and insulting others.20 These are what make you unclean. Eating without washing your hands will not make you unfit to worship God.

We have somehow watered this down to the seven dirty words you can’t say on television. But then again, we shouldn’t be surprised. We have a tendency to water down a lot of what Jesus says.

The Canaanite Woman
I must say, this pericope still bothers me. A lot. I remember Steve Wyatt explaining once that he can hear a slight playfulness in Jesus’ voice when he implies she’s a dog – mocking the general mindset about foreigners and their “unholiness.” But I’m not sure I see that here in the text. Any insight here would be greatly appreciated.

Psalm 19
So we read in the Gospel reading today about how our words show our hearts – and they usually declare that we’re unclean. Then you read about how the heavens display the wonders of God, declaring His goodness without even saying a word! 

Talk is cheap.

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About mattdantodd

My name is Matt Todd. My wife and I have three kids, a dog, and a guinea pig. We adopted our youngest daughter is from Ethiopia. We're definitely not opposed to adopting again. I'm a die-hard fan of the Evansville Aces and the Indiana Hoosiers. What else do you need to know? You're welcome to... Follow me on twitter at @mattdantodd Friend me on facebook
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