Hunkered Down Devotion

Luke 13:10-17 (Voice)
10 Around this time, He was teaching in a synagogue on the Sabbath, the Jewish day of rest. 11 A woman there had been sick for 18 years; she was weak, hunched over, and unable to stand up straight. 12-13 Jesus placed His hands on her and suddenly she could stand straight again. She started praising God, 14 but the synagogue official was indignant because Jesus had not kept their Sabbath regulations by performing this healing.
Synagogue Official: Look, there are six other days when it’s appropriate to get work done. Come on those days to be healed, not on the Sabbath!
Jesus: 15 You religious leaders are such hypocrites! Every single one of you unties his ox or donkey from its manger every single Sabbath Day, and then you lead it out to get a drink of water, right? 16 Do you care more about your farm animals than you care about this woman, one of Abraham’s daughters, oppressed by Satan for 18 years? Can’t we untie her from her oppression on the Sabbath?
17 As the impact of His words settled in, His critics were humiliated, but everyone else loved what Jesus said and celebrated everything He was doing.

The Pharisee’s and Jesus clash because they have a different set of priorities.  In a very real way, life is about a set of choices and the Pharisee’s had made their choice.  Nothing was more important to them than following the letter of the law.  Because of that, in a very real way the law became their God.  

The letter of their law said that it was better to continue to let someone suffer than to attempt to violate the law that said no work should be done on the Sabbath.  Jesus followed another law.  The law that Jesus adhered to was the law of love that stated there is no length too far, to trouble to great to undertake in order to help or save someone in need.

So Jesus meets the woman that has been sick and hunched over for eighteen years and immediately heals her.   What wonderful news, let us all come and rejoice!  But, of course, that isn’t how the Pharisee’s respond, instead, they ask why this poor woman couldn’t wait at least another day.  This seems like a simple test to see if your priorities are in the right or wrong place – how do you greet the healing of brother or sister who has been suffering, with rejoicing or with complaint?  Are we more concerned with appearances or healing?  

Sharing God’s Love,

Prayer:  Lord, help us to be more interested in you and your love than in looking the part and the letter of the law.  Amen.

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