No matter where we go today, we see scars, visible and non-visible ones. Those with cancer, disfigured children, ailments that are just on the bridge of a cure being found but just not there yet. The last year we have been dealing with Covid-19 and we are not sure if the vaccinations are fool proof.
Today’s story however deals with a scar of a different type and yes, it is healed. Faith in Jesus was the solution. It reminds us that no matter what scars we are dealing with, our faith in Jesus is the solution. We also remember that our solution may not be his solution.
Then said Jesus unto them, I will ask you one thing; Is it lawful on the sabbath days to do good, or to do evil? to save life, or to destroy it? And looking round about upon them all, he said unto the man, Stretch forth thy hand. And he did so: and his hand was restored whole as the other.
We return to our series titled “For the One” after a brief break last week for Remembrance Day. We will do this week and take another break next week for our Thanksgiving message. We will then finish off with our last in this series being the mother of Jesus and then our Christmas message. We will take a Christmas break and be back January 9th in the New Year.
As we continue this series, may we be reminded that it’s based on the book by Dr. Danny Forshee with the same title. We have been studying characters of the bible and how they were equipped to evangelized. Hopefully we can take these ideas and utilize them today as we follow the direction of the Great Commission.
We started with Jesus being the teacher, preacher, and molder of man. We looked at John the Baptist, the Paralytic, and the Samaritan Woman. We examined the Apostle Peter, the Apostle John, Apostle Phillip, Nathaniel, and Matthew. We studied the Centurion and the Syro-Phoenician Woman. Two weeks ago, we studied the woman in John 8.
On the Sabbath Jesus was in the synagogue. There was also a man there who had a withered hand. Some Pharisees were there who were trying to trap Jesus. They were watching closely to see if Jesus would heal this man’s hand on the Sabbath, which was against their laws. Jesus knew what they Pharisees were thinking, and he became angry with them because they had hard hearts. Jesus told the man with the withered hand to stand up in front of everybody. Then Jesus asked the people what was ok for them to do on the Sabbath, good or evil, to save a life or to kill.
There was no response to Jesus’ questions. Jesus told the man with the withered hand to stretch it out. When the man did this, his hand was completely healed and looked just the same as his other hand. This angered the Pharisees and the left the synagogue to go plot how they might destroy Jesus.
If you describe a person or a part of their body as withered, you mean that they are thin, and their skin looks old. A withered hand is a hand under bondage. One of the causes of a hand withering spiritually is because of bewitchment or spell. Some cases is a result of transferred evil inheritance. For some persons their parents do not proper because they are under a curse. Biblically to become dry and sapless specially to shrivel from or as if from loss of bodily moisture.
Jesus’ healing of a man’s withered hand serves as a second demonstration of His superiority over the Sabbath. Mark and Matthew also talk about this story in their gospels.
And he entered again into the synagogue; and there was a man there which had a withered hand. And they watched him, whether he would heal him on the sabbath day; that they might accuse him. And he saith unto the man which had the withered hand, Stand forth. And he saith unto them, Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath days, or to do evil? to save life, or to kill? But they held their peace. And when he had looked round about on them with anger, being grieved for the hardness of their hearts, he saith unto the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it out: and his hand was restored whole as the other. And the Pharisees went forth, and straightway took counsel with the Herodians against him, how they might destroy him.
And when he was departed thence, he went into their synagogue: And behold, there was a man who had his hand withered. And they asked him, saying, is it lawful to heal on the sabbath days? that they might accuse him. And he said unto them, what man shall there be among you, that shall have one sheep, and if it falls into a pit on the sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it, and lift it out? How much then is a man better than a sheep? Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the sabbath days. Then saith he to the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it forth; and it was restored whole, like as the other. Then the Pharisees went out, and held a council against him, how they might destroy him.
Luke separates his version of this incident from the previous one referring to Luke 6:1-5 by noting that it occurred on a different day, while Matthew more closely connects the events.
So, what do we learn from this story:
Someone in Need
And it came to pass also on another sabbath, that he entered into the synagogue and taught and there was a man whose right hand was withered. And the scribes and Pharisees watched him, whether he would heal on the sabbath day; that they might find an accusation against him. But he knew their thoughts and said to the man which had the withered hand, Rise up, and stand forth in the midst. And he arose and stood forth.
This is a conflict situation as we are taught that the Sabbath is to be kept holy and attend church.
Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
So, faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.
Scriptures in this story centers on it being un-holy to help anyone on the Sabbath. But we are told to bring all our troubles to Jesus, and it doesn’t say just every day except the Sabbath. We come to church to worship, and to hear the word but we also come to church to be helped when in need.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Let’s add verse 11 to today’s word from God:
And they were filled with madness; and communed one with another what they might do to Jesus.
No matter what the consequences may be Jesus did what was right and that was to help someone in need. If you came across someone that needed help, but it was the Sabbath day, are you going to not help them. No, of course not.
Jesus was not afraid of what they were plotting to have Him arrested and execute. He knew that plan already. Jesus is telling us that the scripture is the right way.
So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: It shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, And it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
Worship while you wait
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
The man with the withered hand had dealt with that all his life or we assume a great part of his life. We see here that we are told that while we wait for God to answer our needs, we are still to worship & praise Him.
Negatives become Positives
And he said, the things which are impossible with men are possible with God.
I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
The man departed, and told the Jews that it was Jesus, who had made him whole.
Everything happens because Christ is in our lives. We have faith and things will get better.
Be Part of the Solution, Not the Problem
We have all heard this before, I am sure. It appears the naysayers say its not right to do these things on the Sabbath, this is the problem. The solution is that Jesus did these things and that is the solution. Think about John 5:15 above, Not only did Jesus heal his hand but what did the man go and do. That’s right became part of the solution and went and proclaim the gospel.
Confront Man-made Traditions that are unbiblical
How many times in our lives does traditions conflict with scriptures. In this story the tradition appeared to be that you don’t do good deeds on the Sabbath. However, the scriptures say otherwise.
I can think of many traditions today that conflict with scriptures. We need to however make sure we take the side of the scriptures.
Remember Your Mission – For the One
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
Remember the Mission – For the One