A Good Worker
How can we be a testimony to Jesus in our work place? Even before we start sharing Christ with others in the work place, we need to be seen to be ‘good workers’ – those who take responsibility, meet deadlines, produce high quality work, maintain good relationships with others. The testimony about Jesus was that he does all things well – let us follow our master in this.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, let us follow your example even in our work situations and work places where people will say that we do all things well – let us be conscientious, hardworking, maintaining good relationships with others and producing good quality work. Just as no fault was found in Daniel in his work; help us to work to a high standard. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
That which defiles
The Pharisees and some of the teachers of the law who had come from Jerusalem gathered around Jesus and saw some of his disciples eating food with hands that were defiled, that is, unwashed. (The Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they give their hands a ceremonial washing, holding to the tradition of the elders. When they come from the marketplace they do not eat unless they wash. And they observe many other traditions, such as the washing of cups, pitchers and kettles. ) So the Pharisees and teachers of the law asked Jesus, “Why donʼt your disciples live according to the tradition of the elders instead of eating their food with defiled hands?” 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.” And he continued, “You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe your own traditions! For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and mother,’ and, ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.’ But you say that if anyone declares that what might have been used to help their father or mother is Corban (that is, devoted to God)— then you no longer let them do anything for their father or mother. Thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like that.” Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen to me, everyone, and understand this. Nothing outside a person can defile them by going into them. Rather, it is what comes out of a person that defiles them.” After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about this parable. “Are you so dull?” he asked. “Donʼt you see that nothing that enters a person from the outside can defile them? For it doesnʼt go into their heart but into their stomach, and then out of the body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.) He went on: “What comes out of a person is what defiles them. For it is from within, out of a personʼs heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and defile a person.”
Mark 7:1-15, 17-23 NIV
Jesus Honors a Syrophoenician Woman’s Faith
Jesus left that place and went to the vicinity of Tyre. He entered a house and did not want anyone to know it; yet he could not keep his presence secret. In fact, as soon as she heard about him, a woman whose little daughter was possessed by an impure spirit came and fell at his feet. The woman was a Greek, born in Syrian Phoenicia. She begged Jesus to drive the demon out of her daughter. “First let the children eat all they want,” he told her, “for it is not right to take the childrenʼs bread and toss it to the dogs.” “Lord,” she replied, “even the dogs under the table eat the childrenʼs crumbs.” Then he told her, “For such a reply, you may go; the demon has left your daughter.” She went home and found her child lying on the bed, and the demon gone.
Mark 7:24-30 NIV
Jesus heals a deaf and mute man
Then Jesus left the vicinity of Tyre and went through Sidon, down to the Sea of Galilee and into the region of the Decapolis. There some people brought to him a man who was deaf and could hardly talk, and they begged Jesus to place his hand on him. After he took him aside, away from the crowd, Jesus put his fingers into the manʼs ears. Then he spit and touched the manʼs tongue. He looked up to heaven and with a deep sigh said to him, “Ephphatha!” (which means “Be opened!” ). At this, the manʼs ears were opened, his tongue was loosened and he began to speak plainly. Jesus commanded them not to tell anyone. But the more he did so, the more they kept talking about it. People were overwhelmed with amazement. “He has done everything well,” they said. “He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak.”
Mark 7:31-37 NIV