Hear the decrees which I am teaching you.
- For the authors of Deuteronomy, Israel's tragic situation was the result of its infidelity and disobedience.
- The solution to Israel's problem was conversion and obedience.
- Israel's greatness lies not in its own strength but in God who remains faithful.
Welcome the word which has taken root in you.
- The Letter of James encourages us to welcome the word that has been planted in us.
- We are the first fruit of God's new creation and thus set apart for God.
- The evidence of this new life is seen in how we deal with others.
This people pays me lip service.
- The Pharisees in today's Gospel were especially concerned with food laws and purity laws because these were what distinguished Israel from the Gentile nations.
- Jesus points out that some of the things many Pharisees cling to so tenaciously are human traditions and not the law of God.
- The more serious matter is God's command to love one's neighbor.