On my daily Matthew cruise, I found yet another incredible message. It's a story you don't hear of too often, but certainly doesn't mean it's not important.
Matthew 12:1-8, "At that time Jesus went
through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and
began to pick some heads of grain and eat them. When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, "Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath."
He answered, "Haven't you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? He
entered the house of God, and he and his companions ate the consecrated
bread—which was not lawful for them to do, but only for the priests. Or haven't you read in the Law that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple desecrate the day and yet are innocent? I tell you that one greater than the temple is here. If you had known what these words mean, 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned the innocent. For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath."
Did you see that?
The Laws of Moses, that included the one about "Remembering the Sabbath, and Keeping it Holy" were a comprehensive 680 + rules and laws that the religious leaders were living by.
Jesus knew the laws. For goodness sake, He wrote them, and gave them to Moses.
So when Jesus came to see the needs of the disciples, mainly that they were hungry, He didn't hesitate to meet their physical needs.
I believe this section gives us a couple of principles for today.
1.) The spirit of the law is important.
You can't simply read the text and contrive a 'hard line' interpretation without doing some good research. Why did God make the law of the Sabbath? What was He trying to say to the hearers of the law? How was He trying to make sure they were in a closer relationship with Him through the laws? We've got to take time, STOP, and instead of trying to get a couple of sound bytes, we've got to be responsible with the way we interpret scripture.
2.) The Sabbath is an important day.
It's no secret. Having a Day of rest is essential to the rhythm of the way God created us. But how do we do a Sabbath day? How do we observe it?
Jesus shows, it's not about denying yourself food. The Sabbath is a time to remind us that we are more than objects of production. We work for 6 days, and then on the 7th, we rest and fill our souls with the things that make us human.
So, try this.
This week, take a day to put down whatever it is you do for work, school, or any kind of production, and just take a day to relax.
Take a breath of fresh air.
Do something that ignites your soul.
Ride a bike.
Go on a hike.
Take some friends out for a day on the lake.
God to a football game.
Have a picnic with your family.
Just make sure, you're not just becoming a robot, and you take some time to remember God crated all we see, and in HIM all things hold together.
Thank you Jesus for giving us a wonderful example of how you take care of our needs. You are The Provider.