Year 2 Day 305
Read - Mark 7:9-13
Message - Alan Burke
We all know the commandments, the fifth commandment to honour your father an mother is the first and foundational commandment in how we love our neighbour and for all the commandments that follows. The reason why it is foundational for how we love our neighbour and all the commandments that followed, is that if we lived in this way, if all people sought to honour their father and their mother then we would live in a radically different world. Just as our relationship with the Lord God underpins how we love our neighbour, the commandment to honour your father and mother underpins and is foundational for all of society.
It is a weighty one just like the rest, because the parent child relationship is the first relationship that we have, it is the beginning of society, it is the foundation for society. The first people we know are our parents, it is our first hospital, school, it’s where we learn, it’s where we learn how the world work and it is our first church. In telling us how to love our neighbour, with God as our starting point, the family then follows, for there is no more fundamental relationship than this one. And honour your father in mother means more than just showing them respect it also means providing them with physical necessities. Yet these Pharisees and Teachers of the Law had by their traditions overruled the word of God.
How so, well though Corban (that is, a gift devoted to God). Corban worked in this way, you could devote your property, investment, home what ever it was not to someone but to God, like signing over what you have now to the church. Corban meant that you continued to benefited from it all the days of your life, you still received the rental income of the property, investment income, could still live in your house but as it was devoted and when you died it went to God.
The thing is that Corban wasn’t a bad thing, how could you say that giving to the work of God was a bad thing, after all it ain’t going to matter who falls out over your stuff when your dead. The problem was that they were allowing this man made rule, this tradition to allow people to escape the obligation that the Law of God placed up on all his people. This Corban tradition, this rule, meant that if you had given a gift to the temple then you were free from having to support your elderly parents and you could claim that you were doing no wrong. I hope we see the horror in this, your parents struggling no matter how bad a parent or parents they had been or how good a parent or parents and the command to honour your father and mother still applies but here they had made their tradition nullify it.
They had set aside the will of God for our protection, for our parents protection, for the benefit of society all because of their tradition. But Jesus calls them out for the hypocrites they were, they were on the face of it devoted to God but their hearts were hardened. To violate the word of God for the sake of the traditions of men is always wrong, this is why we look to the word of God, everything we do must be examined against the word of God alone, Scripture alone is our final authority, we have creeds and confessions, they are a bond of unity but they should always be examined against what the word of God teaches, for it is the word of God that is contained in the Old and New Testament that should be what we look to, all that we believe must be founded upon and agreeable to it.
When we do not obey the Word of God we are implicitly saying that Scripture has no authority over us, we are saying that we know better than God and it is just another outworking of our sinful rebellion. If that is you today then repent of your sin, turn to Christ and know the forgiveness he offers.
Q64 What is required in the fifth commandment?
The fifth commandment requireth the preserving the honor, and performing the duties, belonging to every one in their several places and relations, as superiors, (Eph. 5:21) inferiors, (1 Pet. 2:17) or equals. (Rom. 12:10)