On another Sabbath he went into the synagogue and was teaching, and a man was there whose right hand was shriveled. The Pharisees and the teachers of the law were looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, so they watched him closely to see if he would heal on the Sabbath. But Jesus knew what they were thinking and said to the man with the shriveled hand, “Get up and stand in front of everyone.” So he got up and stood there. Then Jesus said to them, “I ask you, which is lawful on the Sabbath: to do good or to do evil, to save life or to destroy it?” He looked around at them all, and then said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He did so, and his hand was completely restored. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law were furious and began to discuss with one another what they might do to Jesus. - Luke 6:6-11
In today’s devo, Marc talks about the man with the withered hand who Jesus heals on the Sabbath. In Matthew’s account of this story, his contemporaries are still wrestling with which law supersedes the others, holding to the idea that, “This guy had a withered hand his whole life; this can wait ‘til tomorrow!” They essentially believed that keeping the Sabbath was more important than caring for the individual.
But then Jesus replies, “If a sheep falls into a pit on Sabbath, you lift it out, right? Then how much more valuable is a person than a sheep! It is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.” Jesus answers the question as to which was more important, saying, “This is a man with a withered hand; why wait?”
The tragic end of this story is that His response angers His contemporaries, who are more interested in keeping the law than caring for people.
Question: Do you ever wrestle with “doing the right thing” over caring for others? Explain.
Family Chat: When talking about focusing on the needs of others it might be easy to say, "I am too young to do anything," but that is a lie. God wants to use you to help others in your life. Don't make it complicated it might as simple as holding the door open for your teacher, packing an extra granola bar in your lunch for someone who doesn't have food or dropping off some cans of food at a food pantry. Talk with your parents about what YOU can do. Ask your parents to help you find a need to meet.
Take Action: Take a moment this week to reflect with your accountability partners about the steps you have taken since the launch of the Life of Christ study, discussing commitments you have made, steps you have taken, and what has and hasn’t worked for you. Talk through practical applications you sense the Lord is leading you to make.