The Daily Encounter
"Truth > Tradition"
8 You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.”
9 And he said to them, “You have a fine way of rejecting the commandment of God in order to establish your tradition!
Mark 7:8-9 ESV
Tradition has a way of drawing us in, taking us captive, and, if we are not careful, becoming an idol in our hearts. We crave the normalcy, stability, and consistency they traditions provide for us. And if we are honest, we enjoy the false sense of control they often give us. Because of that, we tend to gravitate to them even if they ultimately become counter-productive to the purpose they were originally designed to help us accomplish!
It's true in life and even more true in religion. Our default is to create and cling to our man-made rituals even more than we do to the clear truth and revealed instruction of Scripture.
For many of us you can see this in how we try to come to God - depending on our faithful participation in our religious traditions to make us right with God instead of the simple faith in Christ God requires of us.
And for others our passionate defense of tradition shapes how we pursue God even if our preferred norms aren't grounded or prescribed by Scripture.
To both crowds, Jesus would say, "You are experts at setting aside the commandment of God in order to keep your tradition." (Mark 7.9)
Traditions aren't necessarily bad. In fact, the New Testament actually establishes a few traditions we are meant to follow: baptistism after our conversion, the taking of Communion, the gathering of the saints in worship, prayer, and Scripture.
Yet we must always allow Scripture to be our guide and God's revealed truth in the Bible to shape our experience. His commands matter more than our routines.
Truth > Tradition