Disagreement about the Law
How Disagreements about the Law led to conflict: Ritual Cleanliness
· “They noticed that some of his disciples were eating their food with hands that were ritually unclean” In the minds of Pharisees – Jesus is disobeying the food laws – disrespectful to Jewish law and to God.
· “Why is it that your disciples do not follow the teaching handed down by our ancestors?” The Jewish people went through extreme trials and hardships before they could receive the Commandments from God; and Jesus ignoring all this. The Jewish authorities think that this is very disrespectful to both them and God.
· "How right Isaiah was when he prophesied about you! You are hypocrites.” Jesus called the Jewish authorities hypocrites who pretended to be better than they really were – showing how they had taken the rules to the extreme and forgotten why they should follow God’s law.
· "These people, says God, honour me with their words, but their heart is really far away from me.” Jesus quoted the OT prophet, to suggest that the Pharisees simply paid lip-service to God as they worshipped him only superficially. This would have been particularly insulting to the Jews as the Pharisees were meant to be experts in the law and teach it to others.