Feeding and Healing... On the Sabbath?

A reading for Thursday, October 2, 2014: Luke 6:1-11.

Feeding and healing... two stories in our lesson today and one is about feeding while the other is about healing. Both of these are fairly common stories about Jesus Christ of Nazareth. Jesus was the One that was feeding people that were hungry. Jesus was also the One that was healing people of their infirmities.

The problem in the lesson is that Jesus chooses to act in such ways on the Sabbath day, the day devoted to rest and holiness. The Scribes and the Pharisees are furious. Remember the commandments... "Six days you shall labor and do all your work. But the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work—(Exodus 19:9-10)" If Jesus is the Messiah, they want to know why he would violate the commandments? They are trying to discredit him and catch him in a violation of their law.

Jesus reminds them that the law is given in order that the people might honor the blessings of God in the way they live and in how they worship. Jesus came into the world so that the world might live and all people might be healed. "The Son of Man is lord of the sabbath." The abundance of God is present in Christ even, especially on the sabbath.

Truth is, Jesus demonstrates the abundance of God's grace. If there is hunger, feed. If there is infirmity and you can heal, heal. The law is made to give life, not to deprive and to make God's grace more scarce. Jesus Christ gives life and gives it more fully than we can even imagine. The sabbath is perhaps the perfect place for such things.

Holy God, your love is higher than the heavens and your grace is wider than the sea. Awaken our hearts to the joy of your presence and open our lips o sing your praise; to the glory of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (from PCUSA Daily Prayer)


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