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Faith Daily | 17 January 2023

PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p528

Almighty God,

by whose grace alone we are accepted

and called to your service:

strengthen us by your Holy Spirit

and make us worthy of our calling;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.


GOSPEL for the Day: Mark 2: 23-28

23One sabbath he was going through the grainfields; and as they made their way his disciples began to pluck heads of grain. 24The Pharisees said to him, “Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the sabbath?” 25And he said to them, “Have you never read what David did when he and his companions were hungry and in need of food? 26He entered the house of God, when Abiathar was high priest, and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and he gave some to his companions.” 27Then he said to them, “The sabbath was made for humankind, and not humankind for the sabbath; 28so the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath.”


Sabbath observance was linked with creation. And on the 7th day, God finished the work that he had done & he rested on the 7th day from all the work he had done. So God blessed the 7th day & hallowed it ( Genesis 2:2-3 ) It was also linked with the Exodus : “ Remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, & the Lord your God brought you out from there with a mighty hand & an outstretched arm: therefore the Lord your God commanded you to keep the Sabbath day ( Deuteronomy 5 : 15)” The Sabbath is a sign of God’s covenant with his people.

Like all observant Jews, Jesus honoured the Sabbath & wanted his disciples to do so. The various controversies in which he got involved concerned how best to show this honour, ‘what to keep the sabbath day meant in practice’. Sunday is the Christian Sabbath, when we commemorate Christ’s resurrection.

The Sabbath was meant to be a day of rest when people would be free to think of God, to give thanks for God’s gifts, & to take care of health & wellbeing. But some religious authorities gradually encroached on the Sabbath with so many regulations that it risked no longer serving it’s purpose.

Do we sometimes find ourselves seeking security by exercising too much control over other people’s lives( & too light a control over our own lives ? By contrast, we can trust ourselves to that freedom which we enjoy as God’s sons & daughters.

FINAL PRAYER Jesus reflects

How can the human heart be governed by governance –

rather than compassion.

How can it be so? When my Father God

has made each one in his image….

and my Father God, Abba, only knows compassion and love.

What gets in the way, I wonder?

Is it the fear of lack of control?

My Father, Abba, would say…. let me be your control.

Is it the concern of what people would say, especially the church?

My Father, Abba, would say…. only what I am concerned with matters.

Is it the lack of trust that God, my Father, Abba, is God

and all authority under heaven and earth is with him?

And my Father, Abba, would say,

my Son has come to reveal who I am;

my Son has come to show all my promises are true;

my Son has come with the ultimate gift of love and compassion.

Believe in him. Believe in me.


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