Mark 2:23-28English Standard Version (ESV)
Jesus Is Lord of the Sabbath
23 One Sabbath he was going through the grainfields, and as they made their way, his disciples began to pluck heads of grain. 24 And the Pharisees were saying to him, “Look,why are they doing what is not lawful on the Sabbath?” 25 And he said to them, “Have you never read what David did, when he was in need and was hungry, he and those who were with him: 26 how he entered the house of God, in the time of Abiathar the high priest, and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and also gave it to those who were with him?” 27 And he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. 28 So the Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath.”Accompanying John MacArthur sermon: Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath Part 1
Accompanying David Legge sermon: Lord of the Sabbath
Accompanying Robert Rayburn sermon: Loving God's Law
As Rayburn aptly puts it, the Pharisees had taken the Old Testament view of personal faith in a God of love and the obedient life as a loving response to God’s grace – what we might call a “covenantal view” of law and obedience, they succeeded in burying that under a mass of manmade regulations.
Salvation does not come through right behaviour, but the Pharisees had twisted Scripture and turned it into a legalistic nightmare, a crushing burden on the souls of the Jews. The Sabbath restrictions that they made up were absolutely ridiculous - you could only walk an exact distance and no further, you couldn't carry anything heavier than a dried fig, you couldn't bathe because the water that fell off of you might accidentally wash the floor, and the list goes on and on. It was ridiculous, and was not found in scripture. The Pharisees had added their own manmade rules to what was supposed to be a blessing of rest from work, not an extra burden to bear.
The Sabbath day was a holiday. A day of rest from work. A day to be enjoyed in the worship of God, in the fellowship of other people and of one’s family, and in the doing of good works, the sort of works that not only bless others but make the doer of them so much more satisfied with his or her life. What is there about the Sabbath day not to like? And yet most people think it a galling yoke and even religious people, like the Pharisees of Jesus day and, alas, many Christians since, managed to turn it into a day more oppressive than refreshing, more a burden than a holiday. How is it that we can corrupt even God’s great gifts and screw up even our most golden opportunities? Well, the answer is that, being rebels, we have to do something else than what God has told us to do. And since what he has told us to do is what is best for us and for our happiness, we are left with what is worse...
There is no help for this unless and until we realize that the law of God is, in fact, nothing other but his loving, gracious, generous, wise, and kind instruction. There is no help for this until we realize that the laws and commandments of God are simply the Lord showing us the way he wants us to live because he loves us and knows what is best for us.
Man is so sinful that we corrupt even God's gifts to us.
Jesus answer to the Pharisees when they questioned Him about His disciples "disobedience" was to remind them of the Scripture, and the importance, not just of knowing the scripture, but applying it correctly.
If God did not judge David for breaking an actual law due to extreme hunger, why would He possibly judge the disciples for breaking a man-made law?!
An interesting note is that at the time David had already been annointed King, but he was rejected by his people in favour of Saul. Just like Jesus Himself who was the Messiah, but not yet reigning.
The Pharisees missed the fact that God desires mercy more than sacrifice.
And Jesus instructs them again that the Sabbath was made for man's benefit, not his bondage. In fact, there really can't be a better day than the Sabbath to heal someone or help someone.
The Pharisees were thinking "Who does he think he is?!" and Jesus answers them by, once again, claiming His deity.
Law should never trump love. (Keep in mind that means love as God's Word defines it, not as the world defines it). If it does, we are applying it incorrectly.
Do we love mercy more than sacrifice?
Tomorrow's scripture focus: Mark 3:1-6
Sunday's passage: Isaiah 15-16
Monday's passage: Isaiah 17-18, Proverbs 8, Colossians 1
"Law should never trump love. (Keep in mind that means love as God's Word defines it, not as the world defines it). If it does, we are applying it incorrectly."
Love that! Very well said.
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