Today we will consider an interesting story in the life of Jesus that probably took place shortly before grain harvest. Jesus, His disciples, and others were walking along a lane with grain fields on both sides. The grain was most likely wheat or barley.
We know this story very well, but try to picture the setting. The disciples were probably weary and hot. The Bible says that they were hungry and began to pick the heads of grain. The Pharisees, always looking for trouble, thought, “Good, now we have something to criticize Him for!” And they said, “Look, why do your followers do what is not lawful on the Sabbath?”
You remember how Jesus answered them by reminding them what David did, how he ate the priests’ holy bread and shared it with His companions. This was not lawful. Jesus then spoke with authority as He said, “The Sabbath was made for man and not man for the Sabbath. Therefore, the Son of Man is also Lord of the Sabbath.”
Let’s consider further the meaning of what Jesus said in that field so long ago. His first point made it clear that the Sabbath was to benefit mankind. Some people, who don’t know God, just see His commandments as harsh, demanding things that are hard to do. They don’t understand that His laws are made for our protection, for our good. They are made to help us have a happy and pleasant life. The disciple John tells us, “This is the love of God that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome.”
His second point was, “The Son of Man is also Lord of the Sabbath.” That meant He is in charge of the Sabbath, that He makes the rules, not some Pharisee.
A lord in ancient England often had many men who worked his land. When he was a kind person, he looked out for their interests such that they had a good and prosperous life. When he was a tyrant, the men who worked the land and their families could suffer greatly.
When Jesus is the Lord of our life, we work for the Best of Masters. Still, sometimes life can be hard. Then we need to step back and let life come into clear focus, so we can see the whole picture, rather than just the pain we feel at that moment. Our Lord is also a skilled Comforter and Friend.
This Sabbath is another reminder that we serve the Best of Masters and that He loves us.