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What is it with Rules?

Luke 6:1-4 One time on a Sabbath day, Jesus was walking through some grain fields. His followers picked the grain, rubbed it in their hands, and ate it. Some Pharisees said, “Why are you doing that? It is against the Law of Moses to do that on the Sabbath day.” Jesus answered, “You have read about what David did when he and the people with him were hungry. David went into God’s house. He took the bread that was offered to God and ate it. And he gave some of the bread to the people with him. This was against the Law of Moses, which says that only the priests can eat that bread.”

Christians talk a lot about the grace of God – the unmerited favour of God that He pours out on those of us who so clearly don’t deserve it. But then, in the very next breath, we all have this tendency to codify that grace; to turn it into a bunch of religious rules.

There are more road signs these days, telling us to do this and not do that, than we can ever take in, let alone obey. But actually, we all have rules to follow, be it on the road or in life.

And yet, there’s a sense too, in which we need some freedom to breathe, to live.

Luke 6:1-4 One time on a Sabbath day, Jesus was walking through some grain fields. His followers picked the grain, rubbed it in their hands, and ate it. Some Pharisees said, “Why are you doing that? It is against the Law of Moses to do that on the Sabbath day.” Jesus answered, “You have read about what David did when he and the people with him were hungry. David went into God’s house. He took the bread that was offered to God and ate it. And he gave some of the bread to the people with him. This was against the Law of Moses, which says that only the priests can eat that bread.”

The religious leaders told Jesus, “That’s against the law.” But Jesus turned around to them and said in effect, “You know, people have to eat, don’t they? And in any case, I made this Sabbath, this day of rest for you, not you for the Sabbath.”

Funny how we can take something so wonderful from God – this day of rest – and turn it the wrong way around; into a rule.

And Jesus always comes along and says, “You know something, you’ve got this wrong. It was never ever meant to be a rule.”

I like that.

That’s God’s Word. Fresh … for you … today.

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