Scripture: “At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath.
His disciples were hungry, and they began to pluck heads of grain to eat. But when the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, ‘Look—your disciples are doing what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath.’ (Jesus) said to them, ‘Have you not read what David did when he was hungry (and those who were with him); how he entered the house of God and ate the bread of the Presence, which was not lawful for him to eat nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests? Or have you not read in the Law how on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath and are guiltless?” Matt 12:1-5
Observation: Instead of asking “why”, Pharisees are quick to announce fault or transgression, right? Am I like that? Probably…
My goodness: if I am not supposed to do that, how am I supposed to act? Overlook all faults? That doesn’t sound right either…
Application: Here we are presented with a situation.
Just happens to be Jesus and the disciples hanging out together. Just happens that the disciples were hungry and took advantage of a snacking opportunity. Just happens that there are Pharisees hanging around.
Just happens that the Pharisees jump on an observed fault by the disciples: “Ooo Ooo, caught you!! Shouldn’t have done that…I am going to tell on you…”
How often do I do that very same thing? Maybe not saying stuff as often as an adult but how much to I harbor that so-called knowledge in my heart? How often do I keep score? More than I care to admit I think.
Today I am trying to think as a Learner, a Disciple. What can I pick out of this particular passage to grow as a disciple? There is easy stuff like “Don’t be a Pharisee…” Duh, no kidding. But here is other stuff:
- Jesus said twice here “Have you not read?” Point to pick out for sure.
- Not only “have you not read” but have you reasoned out the application?
- Not only “have you not read” and “reasoned out the application” but also “have I figured out the proper God-fearing, biblical response?”
I think that many times the characteristic of a Pharisee is that they stop at the surface; stops at the first glance. When I am reading in the Bible and I find a “gem”, how often do I hold that “gem” out in front of me…only to find out later that If I read more before and after, that “gem” that I held dear really has another meaning altogether when I read the whole paragraph or chapter or the chapter before and the chapter after.
Seeking God, seeking God’s face, longing after Him, etc. is also longing after His Word—and all sorts of other writings that are instruments of Grace given by the Holy Spirit to discover more about the Creator of the Universe and His Ways.
Prayer: Father, I never thought that repenting from not reading would be something I need to do. Reading is a discipline. Help me read more, retain more, share more, but not assume dictatorial authority. Knowledge is like a bunch of puzzle pieces I think—certainly I think this is true of Biblical Knowledge. Please put all these puzzle pieces into their proper place and let the tapestry of the Gospel be shown. AMEN.