Mark 7:6 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Mark 7:6, NIV: "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."

Mark 7:6, ESV: "And he said to them, “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, “‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me;"

Mark 7:6, KJV: "He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me."

Mark 7:6, NASB: "But He said to them, 'Rightly did Isaiah prophesy about you hypocrites, as it is written: ‘THIS PEOPLE HONORS ME WITH THEIR LIPS, BUT THEIR HEART IS FAR AWAY FROM ME."

Mark 7:6, NLT: "Jesus replied, 'You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you, for he wrote, These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me."

Mark 7:6, CSB: "He answered them, "Isaiah prophesied correctly about you hypocrites, as it is written: This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me."

What does Mark 7:6 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

When the Pharisees and scribes push Jesus' disciples to follow manmade tradition, Jesus responds with Scripture. Mark 7:6–7 include a paraphrase of Isaiah 29:13 which reads "And the Lord said: 'Because this people draw near with their mouth and honor me with their lips, while their hearts are far from me, and their fear of me is a commandment taught by men…" Isaiah preached this warning to Judah through Jerusalem, its capital. About one hundred years later, Judah was taken into exile in Babylon for those crimes.

The great irony is that while the "traditions of the elders" that the Pharisees and scribes so carefully follow (Mark 7:5) were designed to prevent Israel from again falling into catastrophic spiritual failure, the hearts of those who obey the traditions are no better than the idol worshipers in Isaiah's day. An idol is an idol, be it an image of Baal in a temple or belief that adherence to a manmade law can save you from the wrath of God.

Since the day Jesus healed the man with the withered hand on the Sabbath, the Pharisees had been searching for a way to destroy Him (Mark 3:1–6). Here, they try to publicly shame Him, condemning the smallest of His disciple's actions in an attempt to cast doubt on Him, His ministry, and His teaching. Instead of debating, Jesus exposes that their holiness is all talk.