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Lesson # Matt. 12:5-6
Study Material - Matt. 12:5-6
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5 Or [e] have ye [anaginosko] not [ou] read [anaginosko] in [en] the law [nomos] , how that [hoti] on the sabbath days [sabbaton] the priests [hiereus] in [en] the temple [hieron] profane [bebeloo] the sabbath [sabbaton] , and [kai] are [eisi] blameless [anaitios] ?
6 But [de] I say [lego] unto you [humin] , That [hoti] in this place [hode] is one [esti] greater than [meizon] the temple [hieron] . KJV-Interlinear
5 'Or have you not read in the Law, that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple break the Sabbath, and are innocent? 6 'But I say to you, that something greater than the temple is here. NAS
And yet another jab at the reading of the Law of Moses. Jesus knows full well that these Pharisees have read the scriptures, and have read them over and over again, but they consider some things as being exempt, while other things as requiring rigid compliance.
On the Sabbath, there are animal sacrifices, washing of the various articles of the Temple, the lighting of fires, the washing of the various parts of the animal sacrifices, the tieing down of the animal to be sacrificed, the sacrifice of the animel, the placing of the carcus on the alter, the burning, the slaughter or cutting apart of the animal, its removal, the removal of the ashes, the carting of wood for the fire, and on and on the work continues. In fact the Sabbath has twice as much work incorporated in it than any other day of the week - and, it is the priests who are doing the work.
Jesus reminds tham that, that work is in violation of their liberal regulations, yet no one seems to challenge that work.
Have you ever tried to tie down a yearling bull that just won't cooperate? That effort requires the manpower of several individuals to rope and restrain the animal. Have you ever been kicked by an unhappy yearling buul? It is not pleasant. They can kick high and split your skull if you are in the wrong place when they kick. They can certainly break a leg with a quick snap. Check out a rodeo sometime and watch the bull riding competition. Those bulls are not friendly to be sure. So great care and coordination is required to process the sacrificial animals and you just know that sooner of later someone does not tie the rope quite right, or the rope breaks, or something happens such that the animal gets away from the control of the priests. Then the fun begins!!
The priests however looked the other way when considering violations of their Sabbath regulations. They had made their regulations as high on the chart as possible such that their regulations were looked too as being equal with God. The Temple was a 'Holy' place. Boy you just did not say or do anything against the Temple. But now here is Jesus confronting them and their double standards and to pour even more salt on the insults, He flat out states that though the Temple is great, a 'greater than the Temple' was now here. What or who could be greater than the Temple? Only God Himself.
And where is this 'greater'? Right there standing before them. 'In this place.' is a reference to standing right there before those to whom Jesus was speaking.
He was referring to Himself. So they have been told flat that He, Jesus, was the Son of God. They have been told that God the Father was His, Jesus', Father. They have been told that all authority, power, and judgment (of the whole universe) has been given into His hands.
If we heard someone on the street speaking these things we would write them off as nuts and ready for a padded room. But here is Jesus stating that He was God. Furthermore, He could prove it. The miracles He performed were clear proof that he was not some nut looking for loose change and a drink. He raised the dead. He cured all manner of disease and handicaps. He caused storms to cease. He walked on water. He performed many other miracles and he performed them over and over, again and again, and in clear public view. No one could do what He could do unless they were God or had some direct power and authority from God, and God would not give this kind of power to a liar or a fraud. Jesus stated His identity and He proved it.
The Pharisees saw the proof, and they perceived a threat to their little realm of authority and power. So they saw their world as greater than the reality of God. They lacked true understanding of scripture. They lacked an understanding of the purpose of life. They had lived their life with the intention of following their own design to heaven and they were totally wrong. Jesus was not included in their plans. They rejected Jesus, therefore they rejected God (the Father), because Jesus was Gods intent and purpose in history. Rejecting Gods plan means rejecting God Himself and trying to superimpose your own plans over those of God. That is the blasphemy which accompanies negative volition toward God. A disinterested person is a blasphemous person.
Further, a blasphemous person advances to greater negative attitudes, and even greater distortions of life such that they trap themselves in their own lies. This leads to frustration, then anger, then hate, then violence. They nailed Him on the cross.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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