Dunbar Cave Campus Pastor
One Sabbath, when he went in to eat at the house of one of the leading Pharisees, they were watching him closely. 2 There in front of him was a man whose body was swollen with fluid. 3 In response, Jesus asked the law experts and the Pharisees, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath or not?” 4 But they kept silent. He took the man, healed him, and sent him away. 5 And to them, he said, “Which of you whose son or ox falls into a well, will not immediately pull him out on the Sabbath day?” 6 They could find no answer to these things.
When do you rest? When do you actually rest from the busyness and chaos of life? And what do you do when you rest? We all need a day to rest, we need to have a Sabbath day. But what exactly is a Sabbath? It can’t simply mean do nothing. Jesus never intended for the Sabbath to minimized to being a couch potato for a day. In fact, the religious leaders of Jesus’ day were trying to trap Jesus for healing or doing “spiritual work” on the Sabbath day.
A Sabbath day is a day of rest. But more than anything, it is a day of reflection. In the creation account, God made the world in 6 days and on the 7th day He rested. Everytime God created something in that 6 day period, He reflected on what He had done and called it good. And on the 7th day, He reflected on all He had done, the splendor and grandeur of His work. So, for us to observe a Sabbath day, it means we also reflect on the goodness of God and all that He has done for us–which may include reflecting on how God worked in our lives throughout the week. Ultimately, we rest in Him.
Here the Pharisees are trying to trap the Lord of the Sabbath with questions concerning the Sabbath. Ultimately, they missed out on what Jesus was trying to show them. The man in need of healing in the story is an object lesson for us. Jesus came to bring healing. He came to restore creation back to its original image and function, that which He called good. Jesus came to do all that was necessary for salvation and life. He became our rest when He worked on the cross for us. We are now able to rest in His mercy, grace, and love. Reflect on His goodness, rest in His presence, worship Him always; this is true Sabbath.