Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23:
When the Pharisees with some scribes who had come from Jerusalem gathered around Jesus, they observed that some of his disciples ate their meals with unclean, that is, unwashed, hands. For the Pharisees and, in fact, all Jews, do not eat without carefully washing their hands, keeping the tradition of the elders. And on coming from the marketplace they do not eat without purifying themselves. And there are many other things that they have traditionally observed, the purification of cups and jugs and kettles and beds. So the Pharisees and scribes questioned him, “Why do your disciples not follow the tradition of the elders but instead eat a meal with unclean hands?” He responded, “Well did Isaiah prophesy about you hypocrites, as it is written: This people honors me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines human precepts. You disregard God’s commandment but cling to human tradition.” He summoned the crowd again and said to them, “Hear me, all of you, and understand. Nothing that enters one from outside can defile that person; but the things that come out from within are what defile. “From within people, from their hearts, come evil thoughts, unchastity, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, licentiousness, envy, blasphemy, arrogance, folly. All these evils come from within and they defile.”
Jesus makes it clear in the Gospels that it doesn’t matter who we are, where we come from, how we look, how we dress, how much money we have, what our status is in society, etc. The only thing that matters is what comes “from Within”. “Within” is a direct Reference to our Souls and, per Jesus, they are the only thing that matters in this life and in the One to come. You see, this world is merely a test of our Souls. Sometimes, however, we forget “Who” we are in Him while taking this final exam. We came into this world as (and still are) God’s Children and Friend, Justified, United with the Lord, one Spirit with Him, Bought with a Price, Belong to God, Members of Christ’s Body, Saints, Holy Ones, Adopted as God’s Children with direct access to God via the Holy Spirit, Redeemed & Forgiven of all sins, Complete in Christ, Free Forever from condemnation & charges against us, Assured that all things work for Good; can’t be separated from God’s Love, Established, Anointed, & Sealed by God, know the Good Work God has begun in us will be Perfected, Citizens of Heaven, Hidden w/ Christ in God, not given Spirits of fear, but of Power, Love, and Sound Minds, can find Grace & Mercy to help when needed, Born of God, the evil one can’t touch us, Salt of the earth & Light of the world, Branch of the True Vine, Channel of His life, Chosen & Appointed by God to Bear Fruit, Personal, Spirit-Empowered Witnesses of Christ’s, Temples of God, Ministers of Reconciliation for God, God’s Coworkers, Seated with Christ in Heaven, God’s Workmanship, Created for Good Works, may approach God with Freedom & Confidence, and can do all things via Christ’s Strength. All of that is 100% Scriptural – even while “abbreviated” here. We must KNOW Who we are in Him and meditate and Pray upon that. For when we know Who He is and Who we are in Him, there is no stopping us throughout all of Eternity – regardless of the outward appearances and circumstances of this world. So, let’s remember that we’re already Citizens of Heaven and let God do in our Souls what only he can do and leave the Rest to Him.