The Word This Week

Mark 3:1…

Jesus was as appalled at the scribes and Pharisees as they were with Him.

Returning to the synagogue at Capernaum, where His ministry first exploded before the people, Jesus found Himself in a contentious situation regarding a man with a withered hand.

How this could be a contentious situation is beyond Jesus, and He says so - with His question pertaining to the Sabbath. Would the Sabbath prevent an obvious work of God from being performed?

Would you prevent The Lawgiver from healing on the Sabbath, because of His Law?

Already looking for a reason to oppose Jesus, the Pharisees and scribes thought: Yes – not even a good work – think of it – an obvious work of God - can be performed on the Sabbath…

Would this make sense to anyone? Would this make sense to the man with a withered hand? We don’t know - but what if this man’s only opportunity to be healed was on this Sabbath day?

The inflexibility in the hearts and minds of the scribes and Pharisees made Jesus angry. Having already explained the Sabbath was made for man and not man for the Sabbath, they refused to listen. They would keep this man bound in his affliction rather than allowing anyone – even God - to set him free.

The absurdity of their legalism was too much for Jesus to bear, and He would not let it stand. This was a brazen point being made here. What does God think of their management of His Law?

Answer: it’s terrible and cruel. What good could come out of refusing to heal this man because of what day it is?

Grieved over their thoughts, and over the condition of this man who had suddenly become of victim of their pious cruelty, Jesus commanded the man to stretch out his hand – which was impossible for the man to do. He did.

What was their response? This caused the scribes and Pharisees to want Jesus destroyed.

This should tell us all we ever need to know about man’s management of religion.

Pastor Bill