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Series Theme: FRAMEWORKS: Mark's Gospel

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Frameworks: Mark's Gospel chapter 7


(The objective of these ‘Frameworks' is to provide an easy-to-read layout of the text in order then to use these individual verses for verse-by-verse study or meditation. To focus each verse we have also added in italic a description of what is happening)




v.1-15 Confrontation with the Pharisees about Cleanliness

v.17-23 Explanation for the disciples

v.24-30 Jesus deliver's a Greek Woman's daughter

v.31-37 Jesus heals a Deaf and Mute Man


v.1-15 Confrontation with the Pharisees about Cleanliness


v.1,2 (the Pharisees watch Jesus' disciples) 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.  

v.3 (they were strict about cleanliness) (The Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they give their hands a ceremonial washing, holding to the tradition of the elders.  

v.4 (the extent of their strictness) 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)

v.5 (so they challenge Jesus) So the Pharisees and teachers of the law asked Jesus, “Why don't your disciples live according to the tradition of the elders instead of eating their food with defiled hands?”

v.6,7 (he quotes Isaiah about their hardness) He replied, “Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: “‘These people honour me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain;   their teachings are merely human rules.' [Isa 29:13]

v.8 (he condemns them) You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to human traditions.”

v.9,10  (he cites the Old Testament) 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, ‘Honour your father and mother, '[Exo 20:12; Deut 5:16and, ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death. [Exo 21:17; Lev 20:9]  

v.11 (they found a loophole) 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)—  

v.12 (this meant they dishonoured their parents) then you no longer let them do anything for their father or mother.  

v.13 (their traditions refuted the Law) Thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like that.”

v.14,15 (Jesus explains to the crowd) 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.”  



v.17-23 Explanation for the disciples


v.17 (his disciples ask about it) After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about this parable.  

v.18,19 (nothing from outside the body can make them unclean) “Are you so dull?” he asked. “Don't you see that nothing that enters a person from the outside can defile them? For it doesn't go into their heart but into their stomach, and then out of the body.”  (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.)

v.20 (it's what comes out of a person that counts) He went on: “What comes out of a person is what defiles them.  

v.21,22 (he lists the wrongs of the heart) For it is from within, out of a person's heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly.  

v.23 (these come from inside us) All these evils come from inside and defile a person.”



v.24-30 Jesus deliver's a Greek Woman's daughter


v.24 (Jesus secretly visits Tyre) 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.  

v.25 (a needy mother hears about him and comes) 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.  

v.26 (a Greek, she begged for his help) The woman was a Greek, born in Syrian Phoenicia. She begged Jesus to drive the demon out of her daughter.

v.27 (Jesus implies what he has is for the Jews) “First let the children eat all they want,”  he told her,  “for it is not right to take the children's bread and toss it to the dogs.”

v.28 (she suggests she can have the leftovers) “Lord,” she replied, “even the dogs under the table eat the children's crumbs.”

v.29 (he affirms her faith) Then he told her,  “For such a reply, you may go; the demon has left your daughter.”

v.30 (on return her daughter is delivered) She went home and found her child lying on the bed, and the demon gone.



v.31-37 Jesus heals a Deaf and Mute Man


v.31 (Jesus returns south and east) Then Jesus left the vicinity of Tyre and went through Sidon, down to the Sea of Galilee and into the region of the Decapolis.

v.32 (a deaf mute was brought to him) 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.

v.33 (Jesus ministers to him in private) After he took him aside, away from the crowd, Jesus put his fingers into the man's ears. Then he spit and touched the man's tongue.  

v.34 (he commands healing) He looked up to heaven and with a deep sigh said to him,  “Ephphatha!”  (which means  “Be opened!”).

v.35 (the man is healed) At this, the man's ears were opened, his tongue was loosened and he began to speak plainly.

v.36 (Jesus asks for secrecy) Jesus commanded them not to tell anyone. But the more he did so, the more they kept talking about it.  

v.37 (people praise him) People were overwhelmed with amazement. “He has done everything well,” they said. “He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak.”