People like talking about food. We talk about what we love to eat, or maybe we talk about what we’d love to eat if we weren’t trying to drop a few pounds.
Others talk about synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, and additives and then extol the life-saving virtues of organic food.
And quite a few of us don’t talk about food much at all; we just eat whatever we see . . . and reap the consequences.
Jesus said it doesn’t really matter.
Of course He didn’t say it’s wrong to eat organic or gluten-free or low-fat or whatever your preference is, but He did say there’s something that matters much more:
And he called the people to him again and said to them, “Hear me, all of you, and understand: There is nothing outside a person that by going into him can defile him, but the things that come out of a person are what defile him.” And when he had entered the house and left the people, his disciples asked him about the parable. And he said to them, “Then are you also without understanding? Do you not see that whatever goes into a person from outside cannot defile him, since it enters not his heart but his stomach, and is expelled?” (Thus he declared all foods clean.) And he said, “What comes out of a person is what defiles him. For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person” (Mark 7:14-23).
Because of their Law, the Jewish people were very conscious about what they ate, and they had developed other dietary and hand-washing laws that they obsessed over.
Jesus changed all that. As a result, we’re not bound by dietary laws that restrict what we eat or how we wash our hands before we eat.
There’s something much more important than what’s on your plate.
It’s your heart.
Jesus wants us to think more about the center of our volitional and spiritual life than our abs or waistline.
There’s nothing wrong with being health-conscious—it’s “of some value” (1 Timothy 4:8).
But it’s sad to see so many people spending thousands of dollars and untold numbers of hours to look a certain way while almost completely neglecting the part of them that will exist eternally.
The heart, Jesus says, is what determines who we are, what we do. When we slander or lust or lie, we’ve got heart problems.
If we hurt others or put ourselves above them, something’s wrong inside us.
And when we become believers, Jesus Christ grabs our hearts, and then He changes our lives.
Ultimately, that’s what really matters . . . much more than the superficial things that often consume us.