{13}    The Sabbath was made for man [Mk 2:27-28]

Mk 2:27-28
The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.


·         Does it mean that the commandment of “keep the Sabbath holy” is not applicable to Christians?

·         What is the meaning of “Son of Man”?


·         Jesus’ reply to those who criticized His disciples for plucking ears of grain as the walked through the fields one Sabbath and then eating the grain after rubbing the grain to separate the kernel from the husk (Lk 6:1).


·         According to interpreters of the Law, it is forbidden on the Sabbath (Saturday) to: (1) reaping: plucking the ears, and (2) grinding: extract the kernel by rubbing.

·         Hebrew verb for “rest” is “shabath” deriving Sabbath.

·         Jesus invokes two precedents to demonstrate that:

·         (1) law of need taking precedence over the ceremonial law (1Sa 21:1‑6) — incident of David.

·         (2) the Sabbath was instituted by God for the sake of His creatures who, He knew, would need to rest after a hard week’s work (Gen 2:2‑3; Ex 20:8-11; Dt 5:12-15).

·         Jesus’ sabbath healings in Mk 1:25,31 were probably no accidents but were undertaken to regard the sabbath as His by right. “Son of man” is Lord of Sabbath.

·         The Sabbath day was instituted to meet a human need, and the day is best sanctified when human need is met on it rather than becoming an intolerable burden on man.

·         Jesus claims to have the absolute right to overrule the Sabbath if He wills it because of His Person and work as God’s representative man.

·         “Son of man”:

·         ”Son of man” is the name most commonly used by Jesus for Himself. “Man” was regularly expressed in Aramaic by the idiom “son of man”; thus “son of man” may mean mankind as a whole.

·         But Mark uses the simple noun “man” (human being or the human race) in the first two clauses but by “the son of man” in the third; thus it points distinctly only to Jesus.

·         Jesus, in using the term, may be referring to His two aspects:

·         (1) human aspect: a common man, with human frailty

·         (2) divine aspect: will come in glory as judge at the end time as described in Dan 7 which was echoed in Jesus’ sayings (Mk 14:62; Lk 12:32)


{14}    Who is greater than John the Baptist? [Lk 7:28]

Lk 7:28
I tell you, among those born of women there is no one greater than John; yet the one who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.


·         Paradox: if John was not surpassed in greatness by any human being, how could anyone be greater than he?


·         following the account of disciples sent to Jesus from John, who was then imprisoned by Herod Antipas, tetrarch of Galilee and Perea.


·         John was expecting Jesus, the Coming One, to do something spectacular. He had prophesied that the Coming One would do some striking works of judgment (Lk 3:16-17). When nothing seemed to happen he sent men to Jesus to find out why.

·         Jesus’ answer to John’s men is to direct their attention to what was going on: help was being given to the blind, the lame, lepers, the deaf (Isa 35:5-6), the dead and the poor (Isa 61:1) — Messianic significance — the divine accreditation of Jesus’ mission.

·         After the messengers left, Jesus addressed some questions to the onlookers, and made them face up to what John was and stood for: not the reed swayed by the wind, not a man dressed in fine clothes, but a prophet.

·         Jesus addressed John as a prophet and more than a prophet — God’s special messenger sent to prepare His way, foretold in Mal 3:1 — unsurpassed by any other (the highest place possible) (Lk 7:28a)

·         Jesus came to inaugurate the Kingdom of God. And the least in that Kingdom is greater than the greatest of men.

·         John belonged to the time of promise. The least in the Kingdom is greater, not because of any personal qualities he may have, but because he belongs to the time of fulfilment. Jesus is not minimizing the importance of John. He is putting membership of the Kingdom into its proper perspective.


·         We are important in God’s eyes. As sons and daughters of the Creator, we are like princes and princesses of the universe. Shouldn’t we live a life worthy of our position?