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Matthew 15 Amplified Bible (AMP)

Tradition and Commandment

15 Then some Pharisees and scribes from Jerusalem came to Jesus and said, “Why do Your disciples violate the [a]tradition (religious laws) handed down by the [Jewish] elders? For Your disciples do not [ceremonially] wash their hands before they eat.” He replied to them, “Why also do you violate the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition [handed down by the elders]? For God said [through Moses], Honor your father and mother,’ and, ‘He who speaks evil of or insults or treats improperly father or mother is to be put to death.’ But you say, ‘If anyone says to his father or mother, “Whatever [money or resource that] I have that would help you is [already dedicated and] given to God,” he is not to honor his father or his mother [by helping them with their need].’ So by this you have invalidated the word of God [depriving it of force and authority and making it of no effect] for the sake of your tradition [handed down by the elders]. You hypocrites (play-actors, pretenders), rightly did Isaiah prophesy of you when he said,


This people honors Me with their lips,
But their heart is far away from Me.

But in vain do they worship Me,
For they teach as doctrines the precepts of men.’”

10 After Jesus called the crowd to Him, He said, “Listen and understand this: 11 It is not what goes into the mouth of a man that defiles and dishonors him, but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles and dishonors him.”

12 Then the disciples came and said to Jesus, “Do You know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard you say this?” 13 He answered, “Every plant which My heavenly Father did not plant will be torn up by the roots. 14 Leave them alone; they are blind guides [b][leading blind followers]. If a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit.”

The Heart of Man

15 Peter asked Him, “Explain this parable [about what defiles a person] to us.” 16 And He said, “Are you still so dull [and unable to put things together]? 17 Do you not understand that whatever goes into the mouth passes into the stomach, and is eliminated? 18 But whatever [word] comes out of the mouth comes from the heart, and this is what defiles and dishonors the man. 19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts and plans, murders, adulteries, sexual immoralities, thefts, false testimonies, slanders (verbal abuse, irreverent speech, blaspheming). 20 These are the things which defile and dishonor the man; but eating with [ceremonially] unwashed hands does not defile the man.”

The Syrophoenician Woman

21 After leaving there, Jesus withdrew to the district of [c]Tyre and Sidon. 22 And a [d]Canaanite woman from that district came out and began to cry out [urgently], saying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David (Messiah); my daughter is cruelly possessed by a demon.” 23 But He did not say a word in answer to her. And His disciples came and asked Him [repeatedly], “Send her away, because she keeps shouting out after us.” 24 He answered, “I was commissioned by God and sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” 25 But she came and began to kneel down before Him, saying, “Lord, help me!” 26 And He replied, “It is not good (appropriate, fair) to take the [e]children’s bread and throw it to the [f]pet dogs.” 27 She said, “Yes, Lord; but even the pet dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their [young] masters’ table.” 28 Then Jesus answered her, “Woman, your faith [your personal trust and confidence in My power] is great; it will be done for you as you wish.” And her daughter was healed from that moment.

Healing Crowds

29 Jesus went on from there and passed along by [the eastern shore of] the Sea of Galilee. Then He went up on the hillside and was sitting there. 30 And great crowds came to Him, bringing with them the lame, crippled, blind, mute, and many others, and they put them down at His feet; and He healed them. 31 So the crowd was amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled restored, the lame walking, and the blind seeing; and they praised and glorified the God of Israel.

Four Thousand Fed

32 Then Jesus called His disciples to Him, and said, “I feel compassion for the crowd, because they have been with Me now three days and have nothing [left] to eat; and I do not want to send them away hungry, because they might faint [from exhaustion] on the way [home].” 33 The disciples said to Him, “Where are we to get enough bread in this isolated place to feed so large a crowd?” 34 And Jesus asked them, “How many loaves [of bread] do you have?” They replied, “Seven, and a few small fish.” 35 He directed the crowd to sit down on the ground, 36 and He took the seven loaves and the fish; and when He had given thanks, He broke them and started giving them to the disciples, and the disciples [gave them] to the people. 37 And they all ate and were satisfied, and they gathered up seven full baskets of the broken pieces that were left over. 38 [Among] those who ate were 4,000 men, not counting women and children.

39 Then Jesus sent the crowds away, got into the boat and went to the district of [g]Magadan.

Footnotes:

  1. Matthew 15:2 I.e. the oral commentary on the Law, later codified as the Mishnah.
  2. Matthew 15:14 Later mss add of the blind.
  3. Matthew 15:21 Tyre and Sidon were located along the Gentile coastal region of Phoenicia. Tyre was 35 miles and Sidon 60 miles north of Galilee.
  4. Matthew 15:22 The Canaanites were ancient, pagan enemies of Israel.
  5. Matthew 15:26 A reference to the Jewish people.
  6. Matthew 15:26 Jews used kuon (dog) as a derogatory term referring to Gentiles. This dog (kuon) was a despised, filthy, homeless street scavenger. When speaking with this woman, Jesus uses a word for “dog” (kunarion) that refers to a household pet. The use of the word kunariois by both Jesus and the woman reflects the tenderness and spiritual depth of this exchange. More importantly, it foreshadows the fact that Gentile believers would not be spiritually homeless, but would also be welcomed into God’s household as His children. The gracious response of the woman recorded in v 27 confirms that on some level she understands this.
  7. Matthew 15:39 A small town on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee, between Tiberias and Capernaum.
Amplified Bible (AMP)

Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved.

Matthew 15 New International Version (NIV)

That Which Defiles

15 Then some Pharisees and teachers of the law came to Jesus from Jerusalem and asked, “Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? They don’t wash their hands before they eat!”

Jesus replied, “And why do you break the command of God for the sake of your tradition? For God said, ‘Honor your father and mother’[a] and ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.’[b] But you say that if anyone declares that what might have been used to help their father or mother is ‘devoted to God,’ they are not to ‘honor their father or mother’ with it. Thus you nullify the word of God for the sake of your tradition. You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you:

“‘These people honor me with their lips,
    but their hearts are far from me.
They worship me in vain;
    their teachings are merely human rules.[c]

10 Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen and understand. 11 What goes into someone’s mouth does not defile them, but what comes out of their mouth, that is what defiles them.”

12 Then the disciples came to him and asked, “Do you know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this?”

13 He replied, “Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will be pulled up by the roots. 14 Leave them; they are blind guides.[d] If the blind lead the blind, both will fall into a pit.”

15 Peter said, “Explain the parable to us.”

16 “Are you still so dull?” Jesus asked them. 17 “Don’t you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? 18 But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. 19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. 20 These are what defile a person; but eating with unwashed hands does not defile them.”

The Faith of a Canaanite Woman

21 Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. 22 A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is demon-possessed and suffering terribly.”

23 Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.”

24 He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.”

25 The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said.

26 He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.”

27 “Yes it is, Lord,” she said. “Even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master’s table.”

28 Then Jesus said to her, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed at that moment.

Jesus Feeds the Four Thousand

29 Jesus left there and went along the Sea of Galilee. Then he went up on a mountainside and sat down. 30 Great crowds came to him, bringing the lame, the blind, the crippled, the mute and many others, and laid them at his feet; and he healed them. 31 The people were amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled made well, the lame walking and the blind seeing. And they praised the God of Israel.

32 Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat. I do not want to send them away hungry, or they may collapse on the way.”

33 His disciples answered, “Where could we get enough bread in this remote place to feed such a crowd?”

34 “How many loaves do you have?” Jesus asked.

“Seven,” they replied, “and a few small fish.”

35 He told the crowd to sit down on the ground. 36 Then he took the seven loaves and the fish, and when he had given thanks, he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and they in turn to the people. 37 They all ate and were satisfied. Afterward the disciples picked up seven basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. 38 The number of those who ate was four thousand men, besides women and children. 39 After Jesus had sent the crowd away, he got into the boat and went to the vicinity of Magadan.

Footnotes:

  1. Matthew 15:4 Exodus 20:12; Deut. 5:16
  2. Matthew 15:4 Exodus 21:17; Lev. 20:9
  3. Matthew 15:9 Isaiah 29:13
  4. Matthew 15:14 Some manuscripts blind guides of the blind
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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