Monday 18 November 2013

Mark 2:18-28 - It's the Law

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Jesus is questioned twice in Mark 2:18-28. The first question is about fasting and why Jesus' followers are not fasting like those of John the Baptist and those of the Pharisees. The second question is about working on the Sabbath.

The important point here is that the Pharisees were concerned that the Law be obeyed strictly, completely and in every detail. But Jesus has a different view, saying that fasting is no longer appropriate and that the Sabbath was made for people, not people for the Sabbath.

It's not that Jesus disapproves of the Law. But the Pharisees are more interested in form than they are in function. For Jesus it is the purpose and spirit of the Law that is important, not obedience to it in every minor detail, particularly not when to do so would go against kindness or peace or anything that is part of the nature and character of the Father.

So it makes sense to fast when the relationship with the Almighty is broken, but not in the time and place of its restoration! And it makes sense to have a day free of heavy workload, but not to avoid a relaxing walk while snacking on whatever is easily available.

Jesus is Lord! And he is Lord of everything, even of the Sabbath.

And what about us? Are we going to insist on rules and regulations and spend our time nit-picking and finding fault? Or are we going to rejoice in the One who has already fulfilled the Law, walking freely with him in the great field of life, finding everything we need along the way?

Go out in the world with Jesus, meeting people, blessing them, encouraging them, being a friend, bringing peace and reconciliation [Tweet it!]. Let's be joyful as we do it, not weighed down by meticulous adherence to rules.

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