It is all about the heart. The Pharisees are frustrated with Jesus, because they are missing the point. It is not about food or washing your hands. It is not even just about the money you are supposed to give to your parents or God. It is about what is happening in your heart. This is not just about intentions – because Jesus says your actions come out of your heart – and that is what makes you unclean.
It is important that we pay attention to what we eat, and the food laws were important in their time. It is important that we give generously to the work of God and to our parents. It is important that we wash our hands! But it is MORE important that we have our hearts in the right position with God our King. It it possible to obey without devotion – and that leads to hypocrisy. Obey Jesus – from a deep sense of love, gratitude, devotion, commitment, friendship.
Jesus came to change our hearts, to change our very natures. We want the Lord to take away the list of sins that Jesus mentions in verse 19 – but those things can only be changed if we are changed in the heart. Today I want to surrender more and more to Him, to curve my will back to His heart, and live my free and full of joy.