Friday, January 27, 2012

Matthew 15

Traditions and Commandments

The Pharisees accused Jesus and his disciples of breaking tradition of his elders because they don't wash their hands before they eat. Jesus replies that the accuser claims that it is not necessarily important to honor thy father and mother and then calls him a Hypocrite. Then Jesus cites another prophecy.

So Jesus breaks a rule from the old testament, and when he is called on it he changes the subject to accuse the Pharisee of breaking a different rule. Notice Jesus never says "yes, we are breaking that rule and it is ok because...", he just attacks the other person. I see a lot of people use this technique in arguments and it frustrates me to no end (you see it in politics all the time for example). 

What Defiles a Person

What you eat doesn't defile you, what you say is what is important.

Now he officially says it is not bad to eat without washing your hands. Guess they don't know what germs are yet.

The Faith of a Canaanite Woman

A Canaanite woman came up to Jesus and asked him to heal her daughter. Jesus wouldn't help her and said "It is not right to take the children's bread and throw it to the dogs". She pleaded again so he decided to heal her daughter because of her great faith.

Wow, Jesus starts off as a real jerk in this passage. At least he comes around in the end and helps her out. I always thought of Jesus as helping anyone who come along, not being so inclusive. I wonder if this is some kind of turning point for Jesus. In which case the message might be to be ready to change your mind about racism and such. 

Jesus Heals Many

Jesus heals a bunch of people again.

Jesus Feeds the Four Thousand

People having been following Jesus for 3 days and haven't eaten so he feeds them all with seven loaves of bread a a few small fish.

I didn't know this story was in here twice


  1. At first when I read this, I felt like by his actions, (not obeying The Law), that he was showing that they were old. However, I feel like he's validating "God's Law" about when he talks about it and criticizes the Pharisees for not following the OT law. Of course back then, it was just "THE Law." As we read in Matthew 5:7, Jesus did not come to "abolish the prophets or the Law but to fulfill them." He not only criticizes them for disobeying the law, but also says that they violated it for the sake of their reputations. I know stoning peoples' children to death for disobeying them, or killing people for not following the 613 commandments probably would hurt your popularity.

    This is a "little thing" but in verse 21, it says that they went into the district of Tyre and Sidon. Someone pointed out to me once that in the Ezekiel if you search for Tyre, you will notice that it was prophesied that the town would be utterly destroyed and not supposed to exist anymore. This is simply not the case. However, this is something you might want to look into yourself. I don't ever say that I am not infallible. =P

    The Canaanite woman. In Joshua chapter 6, God commands some pretty horrid stuff that kind of made me want to hurl. He had ordered that everyone in the city of Jericho, man, woman, old, young, cattle, sheep etc be slaughtered (he spared the prostitute Rahab). I remember singing a song about this where "the walls of Jericho came tumbling down." Little did I realize that what followed this happy song was nothing short of an ordered genocide. To me, this is reminiscent of Lebenstraum. This was Hitler's term, which mean's "living space" which he planned to carve out of Europe for his "master race" of Aryan Germans. So.. back to the NT. Jesus doesn't seem to big on the Canaaites. To me, it seems like he responds with a metaphor when the disciples ask him to send her away. He says "it's better to let the children to get the scraps before the dogs." Since he is shooing her away, it seems like he is comparing her to a dog. After she admits to being like a dog pleading to him "please. at least the dogs get to eat on the crumbs," he finally heals her. The first time I read this, I had to reread it since it was another story which really bothered me. Especially since it seemed so easy for Jesus to heal multitudes of people. Many superheros, for example have to sometimes pay a price to use their powers so much. Jesus doesn't.

    The second retelling of the fish and loves story. Why did the disciples seem to wonder if Jesus would be able to feed the people if he had already done it? Someone proposed to me that maybe it was two oral traditions of the same fictitious story. (that is up to interpretation of course)

  2. I remember singing that song too.

    It can't be a second retelling of the same story because later on (matthew 16:9-10) me mentions both miracles at the same time.

  3. Sorry. I mean a retelling lol. >_<

  4. You are right, I guess it should be second telling or retelling but not second retelling. I didn't even notice and reused that phrase.


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