Wednesday 24 August 2022

Saturday of Week 22 Year 2

What does it mean to “Keep holy the Sabbath” and what is the reason for this commandment? The Sabbath rest was meant to be a time to remember and celebrate God’s goodness and the goodness of his work both in creation and redemption. It was intended to bring everyday work to a halt and to provide needed rest and refreshment. So Jesus’ disciples were scolded by the scribes and Pharisees, not for plucking and eating corn from the fields, but for doing so on the Sabbath. But is this what keeping holy the Sabbath really mean, where absolutely nothing could be done?

In today's Gospel, Jesus defending His disciples by asserting that human need takes precedence over ritual custom. He reminds the scribes and the Pharisees of what David and his companions did. In their hunger, they ate the bread of offering which only the priest can lawfully eat. Then he concludes with these words, “The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.” What Jesus is trying to tell the scribes and Pharisees and us too, is that the Sabbath is meant to be used to honour the Lord in the way you treat your neighbour, while celebrating the Lord’s Day. Instead of being over legalistic or petty, we should seek the good of our neighbour in all situations with respect and kindness. May we make every effort to honour the Lord in our work and in our rest.

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