People, their needs, and their capacity ought to be considered first.
Matthew 12: 1 – 8
The gospels record Jesus in several conflicts with the Pharisees regarding the Sabbath. Today’s passage is one of those. The context is, Jesus and the disciples were walking in the cornfields one Sabbath when they felt hungry and picked some ears of corn and ate. The Pharisees saw and complained they were breaking the Sabbath Law.
Laws help regulate the life of any society, including religious societies. In religion there are two types of laws, those supported by scripture and those that are wholly man-made. Both are important and necessary for the wellbeing of all disciples. Both are guiding principles but if they become exaggerated or absolute, they turn into burdens difficult to bear.
Jesus challenged the Pharisees’ application of the Law, not because he was a rogue, but because he believed that the Law should not paralyze or weigh down those who are searching for God. People, their needs, and their capacity ought to be considered first. Jesus’ first instinct was to welcome those who were searching for God.