Faith Daily | 18 January 2022
PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p 528
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
23 One sabbath he was going through the cornfields; 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.’
GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by: Meredith Scott-McMahon
How difficult it must have been for people so entrenched in the old rules-based doctrine to understand the utterly revolutionary vision of a God who loved them so intimately He put satisfying their hunger before obeying the rules of the Sabbath!
It’s such a striking example of the ‘new wine’ which couldn’t be poured into old wineskins. The concept of this very personal love God had for them just didn’t fit into a religion where man-made rules governed minute details of their lives. How threatening this must have been to the Pharisees’ iron grip on the power over these people.
But it was Verse 27 that gave me pause, ‘The Sabbath was made for humankind, and not humankind for the Sabbath’. How do we respond to this amazing Love that frees us from the tyranny of rules and asks for relationship instead? Surely to sit in the presence of God on this God-given day and return the love which God in turn reflects back to us in measures so great we cannot comprehend.
And Verse 28 again demonstrates how assertive and authoritative Jesus’ ministry was from the very start. As the Son of God He plainly states His authority over the Sabbath. He was ready to shake the Pharisaic establishment to its core in spite of the growing antagonism, to reveal to the people the true nature of the living God.
FINAL PRAYER: Anon
Come, stir us up, living Christ;
shake our safeness,
scare our mediocrity,
alarm our middle-classness,
unconform our conformity,
disturb our comfort.
Help us then to see as you do,
and share our wealth
and our food
and our time
and our lives.