TRADITIONS AND COMMANDMENTS
During the time of Jesus, one of the biggest problems of the religious people and the leaders was that they put their traditions over the commandment of God. The religious leaders established traditions to help them obey the commandment of God, but they became more important than God's commandments. For example, the washing of hands. According to their traditions, people need to perform their ritual cleansing of hands before eating, and they have to ceremonially clean the cups, pitchers, and pots. So when the religious leaders saw Jesus' disciples eating without washing their hands, they began to judge them. The other tradition that Jesus confronted them with was their offering to God. The fifth commandment of God is to honor the parents by loving and respecting them by supporting them financially if they need financial help. However, the religious leaders use the excuse of offering their money to God instead of helping their parents. As a result, Jesus rebuked them by telling them that they were hypocrites, and He quoted what the prophet Isaiah prophesied, "'These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship is a farce, for they teach man-made ideas as commands from God.' For you ignore God's law and substitute your own tradition." (Mark 7:1-13).
Traditions are good, but once our traditions become more important than the truth of God in the Bible, then it is no longer acceptable to God. The Word of God must be followed above all our traditions, which is why we need to understand the Word of God. God gave us the Bible so that we can know how to follow and worship Him. Following what the Bible says over our traditions can be difficult for some because of families and friends. However, there is a point that we need to live out the Word of God so that the rest of our family and friends can know and live in the truth of God. We also need to pray for them that they may accept and know God's truth.
The reason we want to know God through His Word is so that we can know how to follow and worship Him. We rather worship God that is acceptable to Him than practice our traditions and not acceptable to God.
Ask yourself these questions: Is there any tradition I practice over the commandment of God? What should I do if my tradition doesn't agree with the Word of God? What should I do if others still follow traditions over the Word of God?
Write down all the worries you are facing today and lift them up to God.
Father in Heaven, thank you for teaching me today about the importance of following your Word over traditions. Please help me to follow and obey you. I do not want to be a religious person, yet not acceptable to you. I pray that you would give me the courage, the strength, and the wisdom to follow you, and I pray for those I love who still follow the traditions that they may know and follow your truth. In the name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.