Here Jesus is dealing with a case of “The Letter verses the Spirit of The Law.” In our modern times our first reaction may be one of shock at the man’s insensitivity toward this woman and her plight. However, this man feels he is following the law to the letter; in his mind, he is being faithful to the law of God. Like his Pharisaical brothers the law has been broken and that is really what matters. You must follow it to the letter no-matter the consequence, for this is pleasing to God. Keeping the Sabbath is up-most for in essence it is the highest of days and foremost to be upheld. Besides, this woman can come back tomorrow and be healed what difference can one day make for one who has suffered this long.
In view of the law the man was right. However, he was about to be schooled on the finer points of the law by its author. Jesus enlightened this gentleman that people are what matters. The law and its purpose are to help individuals, not stand in the way of them.
Prayer: Father, help us to be concerned with people over practice in our lives. Amen.
Today’s devotion was written by Carlin Ours, Pastor of Organ Lutheran Church, Salisbury, NC.