On another Sabbath Jesus entered the synagogue and began teaching. There was a man with a paralyzed right hand and the teachers of the Law and the Pharisees watched him: Would Jesus heal the man on the Sabbath? If He did, they could accuse him. But Jesus knew their thoughts and said to the man, «Get up and stand in the middle». Then he spoke to them, «I want to ask you: what is allowed by the Law on the Sabbath, to do good or to do harm, to save life or destroy it?». And Jesus looked around at them all. Then He said to the man, «Stretch out your hand». He stretched it out and his hand was restored, becoming as whole as the other. But they were furious and began to discuss with one another how they could deal with Jesus.
Every movements of life is either observed for good or for bad. There are moments of life, we are totally ignored and it does hurt us. There are people in their smallness liked to be noticed and honoured. The more we give attention to such observation and try to impress them with our good deeds and words, we fail to exist as we are and slowly try to put mask to be as par the expectations of the world.
If there is one thing that we are called to observe is the way God looks at us and learn to see us and everything through the eyes of the Lord, filled with compassion and love. Jesus is asking each and every one us to ‘get-up’, get up from these on lookers, from inhuman tradition and cultures and stand by yourselves, putting everything centred in God, so that we may be touched by His love and compassion.
People may fail to understand our act and our intention. They are free children of God, even in their errors and mistakes. Jesus is accused of giving a preferential attention to the sick person than the Lord of Lords, particularly on this Sabbath day. These accusations fall even before their own logic, ‘to do good or to do harm, to save life or destroy it.’ The more we are concerned about the will of God, the more we will be generous in our openness and forgiveness. Here we will be able to continue the good work entrusted to us by the Lord, for the salvation of the world.
Daily Quote from the early church fathers:
Jesus heals to teach the Pharisees mercy, by Cyril of Alexandria (376-444 AD)
"The miracle sometimes converts to faith those who had disbelieved the word, but the Pharisees watched him to see if he would heal on the sabbath. The nature of an envious person is such that he makes the praises of others food for his own disease and is wickedly maddened by their reputation. Once more he spoke to this; 'he reveals deep and mysterious things; he knows what is in the darkness, and the light dwells with him' (Daniel 2:22). And why did he do this? Perhaps it might be to move the cruel and unpitying Pharisee to compassion. The man’s malady [his withered hand] perhaps might shame them and persuade them to dispel the flames of their envy.
"This question is most wise indeed and a most suitable statement to meet their folly. If it is lawful to do good on the sabbath and nothing prevents the sick being pitied by God, cease picking up opportunities for fault-finding against Christ and bringing down on your own head the sentence which the Father has decreed against those who dishonor the Son. You have heard the Father where he says of the Son by the voice of David, 'I will crush his foes before him and strike down those who hate him' (Psalm 89:23). But if it is not lawful to do good on the sabbath and the law forbids the saving of life, you have made yourself an accuser of the law." (quote from COMMENTARY ON LUKE, HOMILY 23).