Aardvark Blobfish Glaucus & Love
Matthew 12:5 ESV
Matthew 12:9-14 ESV
Numbers 28:9-10 ESV
Mark 2:27-28 ESV
I’ve worked with churches most of my adult life and I’ve been told more times than I can count that I’m nothing like they expected.
Then I ask what they expected?
They usually tell me they expected someone quiet and serious.
I’m silly and not very serious. Really, I’m only quiet when I’m praying.
Hummm…so you think Jesus was a quiet person? Because I don’t think he was quiet or serious…at least not all the time. I think he joked around with His disciples and had fun in between healing people. I actually think He had fun healing people.
Why do I think that?
Because it’s human nature.
Plus, if you look at the animals and the animal names you WILL know that God has a sense of humor.
Take the aardvark…or the blobhfish or the glaucus.
God is creative…totally creative.
So when the Pharisees tried to trip Jesus up by asking Him in Matthew 12:5, “have you not read in the Law how on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath and are guiltless?”
I imagine at that point, Jesus was thinking…really guys?!?
They were trying to intimidate Jesus…who by the way WAS there when the world was created. Jesus could have incinerated them immediately, but He didn’t because God loves all people, even the Pharisees.
A few verses later in Matthew 12:9-14, we read that Jesus: “went on from there and entered their synagogue. And a man was there with a withered hand. And they asked him, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?”—so that they might accuse him. He said to them, “Which one of you who has a sheep, if it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will not take hold of it and lift it out? Of how much more value is a man than a sheep! So it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.” Then he said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” And the man stretched it out, and it was restored, healthy like the other. But the Pharisees went out and conspired against him, how to destroy him.”
Did they even hear HIM?
It IS lawful to do good…even on the Sabbath.
Jesus was quoting Numbers 28:9-10 when it was said by the Lord to Moses there WERE Sabbath offerings, “On the Sabbath day, two male lambs a year old without blemish, and two tenths of an ephah of fine flour for a grain offering, mixed with oil, and its drink offering: this is the burnt offering of every Sabbath, besides the regular burnt offering and its drink offering.”
They could DO on the Sabbath.
Are rules for the sake of rules?
Or does God give us guidelines for love?
Isn’t it all for God’s purposes for mankind? That’s what the Pharisees didn’t understand. They thought rules were rules for the sake of rules.
Jesus wanted us to see and understand that God makes everything possible and everything points back to God’s love for us.
Mark 2:27-28 tells us, “And he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath.”
God’s love for us is more important than rules.
I think the first time I realized I am more important to God than all the rules I had memorized in Sunday School all those years, I was awestruck. For years I had been so focused on learning the rules and the right things to do that I had lost sight of the purpose of the Gospel.
The purpose was for me to know that God loves me.
God loves me. I am broken and messed up and I forget about the rules, but God still loves me.
And so there it is. The Sabbath rules for rest were made for us. They were made for a purpose. The purpose was God’s love for us. He wanted us to take time to rest and turn to Him. He also wanted us to take care of ourselves. The priests were guiltless because of the overarching purpose. Jesus healed and restored the man on the Sabbath because He had compassion on him. Jesus saw a need and He fixed it.
After all, God is God of the Sabbath.
Spiritual Practice: God and You
God loves You. God loves you. God loves YOU. Receive God’s love today.
In God, Deborah