Sunday School Material 1-5-14: Honoring the Sabbath

(Luke 6:1-11; 1/5/14)

Introduction:: A key idea in today’s Sunday School material is Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath, as demonstrated by His disciples eating and His healing on the Sabbath. Prayerfully, we will be challenged to live as if Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath and all areas of our lives.

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Read Luke 6:1-5

I. Harvesting on the Sabbath. In our Sunday School material Jesus and His disciples were walking through a grain field. The disciples began to eat some of the grain, because they were hungry. The Pharisees saw it and began to challenge them.

Jesus talked about how the disciples eating of the grain was similar to David’s men eating the bread set aside for the Priests, as recorded in scriptures. Jesus announces that He is the Lord of the Sabbath.

Applications -

- People and God’s surveillance. Notice in vs. 2 that there is usually someone around us who knows us. And God is always around us.

There are some who sneak off to do what they know is wrong. his text reminds us that not only are people often around, and, more importantly, God is always around.

Let’s live like we believe that God is always around. Such living should be noted for obedience. If God is satisfied with our behavior then we can deal with what people have to say. 

- Living up to the standards of our office. Notice in vs. 2 of our Sunday School material that the Pharisees are attacking the disciples of Jesus. It is important to remember that when the devil cannot attack the leader, he often goes to the helpers.

Thus, it is important for all leaders to walk and live worthy of the vocation and call to ministry that we have accepted. The devil is out to discredit the kingdom and cause trouble anyway that he can.

For example, when the devil can embarrass the kingdom of God by pointing out how few Deacons and Cabinet members come to prayer meeting or who tithe then he is happy.

The disciples were within their rights. The point of this application is that the devil attacked them as a means of getting at Jesus and the kingdom. And the devil is likely to do the same today. 

Let’s work on living up to God’s standards for the office that we hold. We don’t want to be the door through which the devil enters and causes trouble in our church or family. This application is important for every part of the body of Christ.

- Applying God’s word. Notice in vss. 3-4 of the Sunday School material that Jesus knew how to apply the scriptures. It is important for believers to not only know what the Bible says and means, but it is extremely important for them to know what the Bible means to their current situations.

We need to work on understanding how to apply the scriptures. Bible study and Sunday School are important because we get a chance to hear how our applications jive with the applications of our fellow church members.

The devil loves to have us focused on our private interpretations. Let’s work on studying and understanding how to apply God’s word to our lives.

- Lord of the Sabbath. Notice in vs. 5 that Jesus is Lord over the Sabbath. In the immediate context, this meant that the disciples of Jesus were within their rights to eat a little grain because they were hungry.

In a broader sense, Jesus is more important than the Pharisees’ traditions. This idea of Jesus being over the Sabbath should challenge us to make sure that we keep what is important to the Lord on a higher level than what is important to us.

An example that comes to mind is dress code. God is more concerned with people coming to church with whatever they are wearing than with them not coming to church because they don’t have what church goers call “church cloths.”

Let’s work on living as if Jesus is the Lord of the Sabbath. This living should include putting the Lord’s agenda of evangelism and edification above our traditions and past practices.

It includes, on a personal level, making time for rest at some point in the week, instead of a constantly working. 

Read Luke 6:6-11

II. Healing on the Sabbath. In our Sunday School material Jesus was in the synagogue teaching on a Sabbath. There was a man with a shriveled up hand. The Pharisees sought a reason to challenge Jesus.

Jesus healed the man on the basis that it was lawful to do what was good and to heal the man, instead of doing what was bad and withhold healing from the man. The Pharisees were upset and began to discuss what they would do to Jesus.

Applications -

- Being faithful. Notice in vss. 6, 8-10 that Jesus sets a marvelous example of faithfulness, in spite of criticism. First, it was common to see Jesus in the synagogue on the Sabbath. We should be faithful in our churches as well.

Second, In our Sunday School material Jesus healed the man, in spite of the Pharisees wicked agenda. In like manner, we should strive to obey God’s call on our lives, in spite of critics around us.

Third, we should be thankful that just as God was able to heal the man in the text, God still has power to heal and restore our bodies, finances, and relationships. Let’s work on being faithful in service and trusting God’s miraculous power.

- The devil’s use of people. Notice in vss. 7, 11 of our Sunday School material that the devil had religious people acting so ugly in the text.

Instead of being concerned with the man being healed, the Pharisees were more concerned with finding a reason to stop Jesus and save their traditions.

Instead of seeking any kind of reconciliation, the Pharisees sought to destroy Jesus. If we are not careful, the devil will use us to try to hinder God’s program today. Sometimes he uses us with our knowledge and many times he uses us without our knowing that we are being used by the devil.

Let’s work on keeping the devil from using us in his wicked schemes. A great way to carry out this application is to prayerful study God’s word with the support of other believers.

Conclusion: Let’s working on living as if Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath and all areas of our lives. God has much for those who obey His will.

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