15 Then answered Peter and said unto him, Declare unto us this parable.

16 And Jesus said, Are ye also yet without understanding?

17 Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught?

18 But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man.

19 For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies:

20 These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.

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15 But Peter said to Him, Explain this [a]proverb (this [b]maxim) to us.

16 And He said, Are you also even yet dull and ignorant [without understanding and [c]unable to put things together]?

17 Do you not see and understand that whatever goes into the mouth passes into the [d]abdomen and so passes on into the place where discharges are deposited?

18 But whatever comes out of the mouth comes from the heart, and this is what makes a man unclean and defiles [him].

19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts (reasonings and disputings and designs) such as murder, adultery, sexual vice, theft, false witnessing, slander, and irreverent speech.

20 These are what make a man unclean and defile [him]; but eating with unwashed hands does not make him unclean or defile [him].

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  1. Matthew 15:15 G. Abbott-Smith, Manual Greek Lexicon.
  2. Matthew 15:15 Joseph Thayer, A Greek-English Lexicon.
  3. Matthew 15:16 Hermann Cremer, Biblico-Theological Lexicon.
  4. Matthew 15:17 James Moulton and George Milligan, The Vocabulary.

15 Then Peter asked Jesus to explain what he meant when he said that people are not defiled by nonkosher food.

16 “Don’t you understand?” Jesus asked him. 17 “Don’t you see that anything you eat passes through the digestive tract and out again? 18 But evil words come from an evil heart and defile the man who says them. 19 For from the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, lying, and slander. 20 These are what defile; but there is no spiritual defilement from eating without first going through the ritual of ceremonial handwashing!”

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