Allan Kardec

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8. Then came to Jesus scribes and Pharisees, which were in Jerusalem, saying, Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? For they wash not their hands when they eat bread. But He answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandments of God by your tradition? For God commanded, saying, honour thy father and mother: and, he that curseth father and mother, let him die the death. But ye say, Whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, it is a gift; by whatsoever though mightest be profited by me; and honour not his father or his mother he shall be free. Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition. Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you saying, This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrine the commandments of men.

And He called the multitude, and said unto them, Hear, and understand: Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man. Then came his disciples, and said unto Him, Knowest thou that the Pharisees were offended, after they heard this saying? But He answered and said, every plant; which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up. Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch (Matthew, 15:1-14).

9. And as He spake, a certain Pharisee besought Him to dine with him: and He went in, and sat down to meat And when the Pharisee saw it; he marvelled that He had not first washed before dinner, and the Lord said unto him, Now do ye Pharisees make clean the outside of the cup and the platter; but your inward part is full of ravening and wickedness. Ye fools, did not He that made that which is without make that which is within also?. (Luke 11: 37-40).

10. The Jews had scorned God's true commandments in order to cling to the practice of regulations which had been established by man and had made the observance of these regulations a matter of conscience. The original simple substance became lost beneath complicated forms of ritual. As it was much easier to practice exterior cult than to effect moral reform, to wash hands instead of cleansing the heart, Man became deluded, believing himself exonerated before God by conforming to these practices. Thus, seeing that the people were taught that God demanded nothing more of them, they remained the same as they had always been. Hence the prophet said: 'But in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrine commandments of men."

The verification of this can be found in the moral doctrine of Christ, which has ended up in second place and as a result many Christians, just like the ancient Jews, consider that salvation is better guaranteed by means of external practice rather than by moral practice. It is to these man- made additions to God's law which Jesus referred to when He said "Every plant which my heavenly Father hath not planted shall be rooted up."

The object of religion is to conduct humanity towards God. Well, God can only be reached through perfection. Therefore every religion which does not make Man better than at the present time, will never reach its objective. Everything which Man judges will support him in committing evil, is either false or had its principles falsified. Such is the result of all religions where the form surmounts the base. Belief in the efficiency of exterior manifestation is null and void if it does not oppose the acts of murder, adultery, robbery, the causing of slander or damage in whatsoever form to whomsoever it may be. These kinds of religion never create godly men and women, only people who are superstitious, hypocrites and fanatics.

The mere appearance of pureness is not enough, because above all else it is necessary to have a pure heart.

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