Clean Hands, Pure Heart

Photo by Polina Tankilevitch on

The Pharisees washed their hands before they ate, which was a tradition carried over from Old Testament times when a person’s hands reflected their activities. Clean hands symbolized pure actions.

One day, “The Pharisees and teachers of the law asked Jesus, ‘Why don’t your disciples live according to the tradition of the elders instead of eating their food with defiled hands?’ He replied, ‘Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: ‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are merely human rules'” (Mark 7:5-7).


“Who may ascend the mountain of the Lord? Who may stand in his holy place? The one who has clean hands a a pure heart . . . ” (Psalm 24:3-4).

Henry Blackaby said in Experiencing God Devotional, p. 227, “The closer you get to holy God, the more obvious even your smallest sins become. The more your know of God’s character, the more you will realize the need to wash your hands and purify your heart before you get close to Him.”


Thank you, Father God, for your word. It helps us know better how to live for you. Help us to become more like Jesus. In His great name, we pray, Amen.