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Faith Daily | 5 September 2022

PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p576

O God,

you know us to be set in the midst

of so many and so great dangers

that by reason of the frailty of our nature

we cannot always stand upright:

grant to us such strength and protection

as may support us in all dangers

and carry us through all temptations;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.


GOSPEL for the Day: Luke 6: 6-11

6On another sabbath he entered the synagogue and taught, and there was a man there whose right hand was withered. 7The scribes and the Pharisees watched him to see whether he would cure on the sabbath, so that they might find an accusation against him. 8Even though he knew what they were thinking, he said to the man who had the withered hand, “Come and stand here.” He got up and stood there. 9Then Jesus said to them, “I ask you, is it lawful to do good or to do harm on the sabbath, to save life or to destroy it?” 10After looking around at all of them, he said to him, “Stretch out your hand.” He did so, and his hand was restored. 11But they were filled with fury and discussed with one another what they might do to Jesus.


We will all be able to relate to the setting of this passage. There are three main parties: Jesus, the scribes and Pharisees, and the others in the synagogue who witnessed what was taking place. We will have been aware of situations sometimes described as a ‘set up’, where a group contrives to bring an individual undone by opportunistically exploiting a situation that has emerged. We may also have seen situations where the individual, being well aware of what is being attempted, turns the tables on the would be detractors.

Here it is interesting to imagine ourselves among the observing group. The scribes and Pharisees are waiting for Jesus to incriminate Himself in the eyes of those who equate observance of the Law with godliness. They are allowing the situation to evolve naturally, in their minds setting Jesus up to condemn Himself. Jesus, being well aware of their motives, acts in the way He so often does when separating truth from pretence.

“I ask you, is it lawful to do good or to do harm on the sabbath, to save life or to destroy it?”

The onlookers are on side.

Then He is ready to say to the man with the crippled arm “Stretch out your hand”.

Yet another example of how actions are consequences of motives, and can speak louder than words. But where both words and actions are generated by the understanding, demonstrated by Jesus like no other, of the words of the prophet Micah in CH 6 v8, that the path to follow is one in which His followers will strive to “act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with God”.

FINAL PRAYER Eddie Espinosa (MP 69)

Change my heart O God,

Make it ever true,

Change my heart O God,

may I be like You.

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