Jesus and the Ancient Superstitious "Evil Eye" Problem.

Are we to actually believe that people have a powerful "evil eye"? In Matt 6:22 (Luke 11:34-36) Jesus says "The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is generous [NRSV: healthy], your whole body will be full of light; but if your eye is evil, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!" Later, Jesus mentions the evil eye in the parable of the laborers in the vineyard (Matt 20:15). The landowner asks the worker, "Do you have the evil eye because I am generous?"

According to the Gospel of Mark, Jesus, in a dispute with the Pharisees over the issue of purity, (Mark 7: 1-23), lists the evil eye (Mark 7:22) among a group of evil things (Mark 7:23) that emerge from the human heart and thereby pollute a person. Note that Paul (Gal. 3:1) uses the concept as well: "O foolish Galatians! Who has put the evil eye on, you before whose eyes Jesus Christ was proclaimed crucified?"