January 13, 2015
READ: Matthew 12:9-14
And how much more valuable is a person than a sheep! Yes, the law permits a person to do good on the Sabbath (v.12).
One day during class, Adrionna Harris noticed something disturbing—one of her young classmates cutting himself with a small razor. As she perceived it to be a grave situation, she did what she thought was the right thing to do—stepped in, took the razor from him and threw it away. But instead of receiving praise, her compassionate act earned her a 10 day suspension. Asked if she would do it again, Adrionna replied: “Even if I got in trouble, it didn’t matter because I was helping him . . . I would do it again even if I got suspended.”
Just as Adrionna’s act of compassion sparked controversy in her school, Jesus’ compassionate act sparked a religious feud with the Pharisees.
Always jabbing at Jesus and looking for an opening for a knockout punch, the Pharisees used a man with a deformed hand as a way to bait the Saviour into breaking their law (Matthew 12:10). Jesus told them that if Jews were allowed to care for animals in dire situations on the Sabbath, how much more should they set aside rules and codes to care for people (vv.11-12).
Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath, so He could regulate what is and isn’t permitted on that day (vv.6,8). Knowing that it would land Him in hot water with the religious leaders (and it did), Jesus restored the man’s hand to wholeness (vv.13-14).
Even if we get in trouble, sometimes we’re compelled to go against traditions and preferences to help people in need. When we help them, we imitate God (Ephesians 5:1), reveal the genuineness of our faith (James 2:14-17) and share our brothers’ and sisters’ burdens (Galatians 6:1). —Marvin Williams
365-day plan› Genesis 22:1-19
Read Esther 4:8-16 and see how one woman went against the rules to save her people.
When was the last time you asked and acted on the question: “Is there anyone who I can show kindness to today?” Even if you get in trouble, what rules and rituals do you need to ignore in order to help someone in need?