35. Sabbath controversy #3 Heals withered hand

Matthew 12:9-14; Mark 3:1-6; Luke 6:6-11

Healing of the withered hand

  • v9 Seemingly, right after Jesus defends his disciples picking grain heads he goes to synagogue and makes a stronger case for his stance on the sabbath. The Pharisees believed in applying pressure on people Jesus promoted mercy to people.
  • v10 It is always lawful to do good. There is no biblical law that prevents the practice of medicine. This restriction is only found in the tradition of the elders unless the healing or medicine was to save a life.
  • v11 This is common sense. Jesus is exposing how ignorant the tradition of the elders really is. If a life is in danger you would save it.
  • v12 How much more valuable is a human life? Is it not more valuable than the sheep that you would save? Why not show mercy?
  • v13 “Stretch out your hand.” This is an in your face moment where Jesus uses a Miracle to testify to the legitimacy of his claim to be the “Son of Man”
  • v14 The Pharisees plot to Kill Jesus confirms that they hardened their hearts and rejected the validity of the 6 witnesses Jesus claims testify of him. 1. Himself 2. John the Baptist 3. His works 4. The Father 5. The Scriptures 6. Moses. In this specific instances they are rejecting his works as a testimony. Later we will find they credit this work the demons.

Jesus’ heart for people

Matthew 12:15-21

  • v15 healing the sick was uncommon in the OT. Jesus chose to display his deity by healing the sick, rasing the dead and casting out demons. Because of this the multitudes followed him where he went. Reminiscent of the pillar of fire. Exodus 13:21
  • v16 Jesus warned people and demons not to tell who who was.
    • He did not want a false are partial testimony about himself spreading. Matt 9:30; Mark 1:43-44; Mark 5:43; Mark 7:36
    • He did not want demons announcing his deity. Luke 4:33-35
    • He did not want to be installed as king or crucified before spreading the message of repentance in Isreal John 6:15
    • It became difficult for Jesus to go places he needed to because of the crowds. Mark 1:45
  • v17 Isaiah 42:1-9
  • v18 The messiah will not arrive with a political agenda and military campaigns, but with gentleness and meekness (servant). Galatians 5:23; Matthew 5:5 This was contrary to Jewish expectation.
  • v18 Justice to the gentiles was an offensive idea to the Jewish mind. Though Israel was called to be this witness and rejected it. Jonah 4:1-4; 1 Kings 8:41-43; Isaiah 49:6; Isaiah 42:6
  • v18 The spirit upon him came in the gentleness of a dove. Jesus was to show mercy to gentiles who were ignorant of the way of God. Luke 3:22
  • v19 Jesus would not stir a revolution or force his way into power. He would not stoke the fires of anger and injustice. James 1:20. Injustice stirs offense which is a breading ground for civil unrest.
  • v20 A bruised reed is a partially broken plant. Think of a tomato plant when it breaks it becomes difficult to salvage. Jesus comes to salvage the broken. A reed was also know to be used by shepherds as a instrument once broken they throw it out.
  • A smoldering wick can hardly give any light and if moved to quickly will be blown out. Jesus will not blow out a smoldering wick, he tends to it to make the flame stronger.
  • A bruised reed and a smoldering wick are items that are deemed useless. Weak and broken people can often be seen as useless people with no purpose. Jesus came to serve people who are like the reed and the wick, he tends to their wounds kindles the fire in them and gives them great purpose. Matthew 5:14-16
  • Jesus will not bring justice to victory by stirring a revolution through anger and might. Through gentleness and meekness he makes wrong things right. He invites us to participate in the Sermon on the Mount. This is his strategy to make us compatible with the Kingdom. Matthew 5:43-48
  • Jesus full justice is delayed until the day of the Lord. The world demands immediate Justice in small and large offenses. Believers anchor their hope in The Day of the Lord. In the narrow way Matthew 7:13-14 we refuse to take Justice in our own hands regardless of how small the offense is.
  • We live confidently in meekness and humility that a day in coming when Jesus will make wrong things right. Titus 2:13
  • v21 Isaiah prophesied that Jesus was the future hope of the Gentiles Isaiah 42:6; Zechariah 14

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