What is the meaning of Matthew 15: 8-9?


#1

While looking through my bible, I came across Matthew 15.8,9 in the back of my bible in a section that says 'New Testament Passages… Quoted or Paraphrased from the Septuagint"

It reads as follows

“These people, says God,…honor me with their words but their heart is really far away from me. It is no use for them to worship me, because they teach man-made rules and laws.”

What are the man made rules and laws he is talking about? I was caught on this because due to my lack of knowledge, I don’t know if we have “man made rules and laws”. I thought about it this way also, if anyone ever had a conversation with me about the faith and brought up Matthew 15 8-9 saying we have man made rules and laws, I don’t know how I would respond.

Any help is appreciated. Thank You and God Bless.


#2

[quote="Maria1993, post:1, topic:311303"]

What are the man made rules and laws he is talking about? I was caught on this because due to my lack of knowledge, I don't know if we have "man made rules and laws". I thought about it this way also, if anyone ever had a conversation with me about the faith and brought up Matthew 15 8-9 saying we have man made rules and laws, I don't know how I would respond.

[/quote]

From the Haydock Commentary:
"Commandments of men. The doctrines and commandments here reprehended, are such as are either contrary to the law of God, (as that of neglecting parents, under pretence of giving to God) or at least are frivolous, unprofitable, and no ways conducing to true piety, as that of often washing hands, &c. without regard to the purity of the heart. But as to the rules and ordinances of the holy Church, touching fasts, festivals, &c. these are no ways repugnant to, but highly agreeable to God's holy word, and all Christian piety; neither are they to be counted among the doctrines and commandments of men, because they proceed not from mere human authority, but from that which Christ has established in his Church; whose pastors he has commanded us to hear and obey, even as himself."

The gist of this is Jesus is taking aim at the Pharisaic laws that emphasize external observances over works of charity and mercy. These verses are not meant to dismiss apostolic authority or Sacred Tradition.

Joe


#3

[quote="Maria1993, post:1, topic:311303"]
While looking through my bible, I came across Matthew 15.8,9 in the back of my bible in a section that says 'New Testament Passages... Quoted or Paraphrased from the Septuagint"

It reads as follows

"These people, says God,....honor me with their words but their heart is really far away from me. It is no use for them to worship me, because they teach man-made rules and laws."

What are the man made rules and laws he is talking about? I was caught on this because due to my lack of knowledge, I don't know if we have "man made rules and laws". I thought about it this way also, if anyone ever had a conversation with me about the faith and brought up Matthew 15 8-9 saying we have man made rules and laws, I don't know how I would respond.

Any help is appreciated. Thank You and God Bless.

[/quote]


#4

Denouncing them as hypocrites; he applies to them a derogatory prophecy of Isaih. Then a wider audience (the crowd) he goess to SAY THE VIOLATION OF TRADITION IS DISPUTED THAT HAS STARTED,
God bless you now.

In His Divine Mercy,
St Hilary


#5

[quote="Maria1993, post:1, topic:311303"]

What are the man made rules and laws he is talking about? I was caught on this because due to my lack of knowledge, I don't know if we have "man made rules and laws". I thought about it this way also, if anyone ever had a conversation with me about the faith and brought up Matthew 15 8-9 saying we have man made rules and laws, I don't know how I would respond.

[/quote]

i don't see it as a matter of whether or not "we have man made rules and laws" . . . to me, it is asking us to examine the status of our personal faith . . . do i honour God with just my words? . . . i don't have to anwer to anyone but God

i'm sure you've read Matthew more than once, but you didn't see this . . . i would interpret this phenpmenon as a call to deepen my faith


#6

The teachings, liturgy and laws of the Church are beautiful but are of no use unless we have hearts open to Christ. That is why the first commandment (according to Christ) is to love The Lord your God with your whole being. If our heart is disposed towards Him, then every liturgical action we engage in becomes true worship and not empty lip service. Even in the OT, the Psalms tell us that God sees offerings always before Him and does not desire more animal sacrifice but rather a humble and contrite heart. That seems confusing since so much sacrifice is detailed in the OT but all of the sacrifices were meant to draw people in repentance and deeper relationship with God. The sacrifice of praise, of our lives is totally necessary. From that point, we joyfully follow the teachings of the Church since Jesus gave her authority to help instruct us and to help us to draw ever closer through the sacraments.

So- don't go to mass and let it just be rote. Rote is no substitute for relationship. Ask for the grace to love Him more and more so that you can see how beautiful it all is.


#7

[quote="Maria1993, post:1, topic:311303"]
While looking through my bible, I came across Matthew 15.8,9 in the back of my bible in a section that says 'New Testament Passages... Quoted or Paraphrased from the Septuagint"

It reads as follows

"These people, says God,....honor me with their words but their heart is really far away from me. It is no use for them to worship me, because they teach man-made rules and laws."

What are the man made rules and laws he is talking about? I was caught on this because due to my lack of knowledge, I don't know if we have "man made rules and laws". I thought about it this way also, if anyone ever had a conversation with me about the faith and brought up Matthew 15 8-9 saying we have man made rules and laws, I don't know how I would respond.

Any help is appreciated. Thank You and God Bless.

[/quote]

You have had many good answers already about the state of one's heart. When you look at some of the passages where Jesus upbraided the Pharisees, it becomes clear that there were many rules made by them that did not have honor of God at their center.

If you read the passage just before this it says:

Matt 15:1-7
Then Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, 2 "Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands before they eat." 3 He answered them, "And why do you break the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition? 4 For God said, 'Honor your father and your mother,' and, 'Whoever speaks evil of father or mother must surely die.' 5 But you say that whoever tells father or mother, 'Whatever support you might have had from me is given to God,' then that person need not honor the father. 6 So, for the sake of your tradition, you make void the word of God. 7 You hypocrites.....

Matt 9:11-13
11 When the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, "Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?" 12 But when he heard this, he said, "Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. 13 Go and learn what this means, 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice.' For I have come to call not the righteous but sinners."

There is nothing inherintly wrong with rules or traditions, the problem becomes when they "make void the word of God".

Read Matt. 23, and you will see a great many examples.


#8

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