Mark – The Facts.
Where do we stand in our attitudes on our chosen Sabbath for rest and doing good? What do we think about? What do church leaders think about as they go about their work to lead people in worship, to read God’s Word and then talk about it. Are we doing it from a heart to help? Where do we stand on this? Do the rules get in the way of helping relationships grow with Jesus and with others?
I ask myself these questions as a read this next passage. Jesus comes to the meeting place. He knows a crippled man is there. The Pharisees know the man is there. They are watching to see if Jesus breaks the rules of the Sabbath by healing the man (“doing work”). Jesus says to the man with crippled hands, “Stand here where we can see you.” Jesus will show the power of God to those gathered there. The man-made rules go out the door and a new healing, restorative relationship is ushered in between God and man.
The next words from Jesus to the angry, frustrated Pharisees are, “What kind of action suits the Sabbath best? Doing good or doing evil? Helping people or leaving them helpless?”
I pray that all church leaders ask this same question each Monday morning as they evaluate their hearts and actions after each weekend of praising God, preaching and teaching. Did we help people or leave them helpless? WHAT did we do to help? How can we help even more? Then go to prayer asking those questions. God will answer! God’s church will grow from the inside out. “STAND HERE” and watch the power of God!
Mark 3, The Message
1-3 Then he went back in the meeting place where he found a man with a crippled hand. The Pharisees had their eyes on Jesus to see if he would heal him, hoping to catch him in a Sabbath infraction. He said to the man with the crippled hand, “Stand here where we can see you.”
4 Then he spoke to the people: “What kind of action suits the Sabbath best? Doing good or doing evil? Helping people or leaving them helpless?” No one said a word.
5-6 He looked them in the eye, one after another, angry now, furious at their hard-nosed religion. He said to the man, “Hold out your hand.” He held it out—it was as good as new! The Pharisees got out as fast as they could, sputtering about how they would join forces with Herod’s followers and ruin him.
Dear Heavenly Father,
Lead us to stand firm on Your Truth. Show us more and more ways to help others find You and follow You. Help us to see around and through the rules man makes and see You. Help us help others because of our love for You. Thank you for helping us. In Jesus Name, Amen