Article Index

 

Matthew

Matthew 12

Matthew 12:1-8

At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath, and His disciples became hungry and began to pick the heads of grain and eat. But when the Pharisees saw this, they said to Him, "Look, Your disciples do what is not lawful to do on a Sabbath." But He said to them, "Have you not read what David did when he became hungry, he and his companions, how he entered the house of God, and they ate the consecrated bread, which was not lawful for him to eat nor for those with him, but for the priests alone? Or have you not read in the Law, that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple break the Sabbath and are innocent? But I say to you that something greater than the temple is here. But if you had known what this means, 'I DESIRE COMPASSION, AND NOT A SACRIFICE,' you would not have condemned the innocent. For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath."

 

The point of this passage focuses on the priority of commandments. It appears that (in Messiah's day) picking heads of grain to eat was considered "work" and therefore forbidden on the Sabbath. Messiah responds to the Pharisees' question by noting the priority of commandments: sustaining life (e.g. by eating) is of greater importance than not working on the Sabbath. To prove His point he provides two examples of compassionate behavior that serve to sustain life instead of destroying it on the Sabbath:

  • David's eating of bread from the Tabernacle
  • Levitical service in the Temple

 

Yeshua declares His authority in these matters by stating "The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath." Note that He did not abolish the Sabbath or change it in any way. He simply clarified a misconception regarding its priority in regards to other commandments.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Sustaining life (e.g. by eating) is of greater priority than avoiding work on the Sabbath. (Matthew 12:1-8)
  • Yeshua (the Son of Man) is Lord of the Sabbath. (Matthew 12:8)

 

In the next few verses, Yeshua points out that healing on the Sabbath is also lawful. Rather than abolishing the Law He clarifies what is permitted within the boundaries of the Law.

Matthew 12:10-12

And a man was there whose hand was withered. And they questioned Jesus, asking, "Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?"--so that they might accuse Him. And He said to them, "What man is there among you who has a sheep, and if it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will he not take hold of it and lift it out? How much more valuable then is a man than a sheep! So then, it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath."

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Healing on the Sabbath is lawful. (Matthew 12:10-12)
  • It is lawful to do good by helping others on the Sabbath. (Matthew 12:12)

 

Matthew 24

Matthew 24 is a chapter loaded with end-times prophecy given by Messiah Himself. Messiah warns that when the abomination of desolation is seen standing in the holy place then those who are in Judea must flee to the mountains. (Matthew 24:15-16). In verse 20 He makes this statement:

Matthew 24:20

"But pray that your flight will not be in the winter, or on a Sabbath.

 

What is Messiah's point? Why would it matter if their flight occurred in the winter or on a Sabbath? Because in both scenarios their flight would be negatively impacted! In winter the cold, harsh conditions would restrict those who were fleeing. On a Sabbath there is only a certain distance that a person should walk (e.g. Acts 1:12) to meet the commandment of Exodus 16:29. If Messiah "fulfilled the Law" in such a way that the Sabbath commandments were no longer relevant then why would He make mention of this? The answer is found in Matthew 5:

Matthew 5:17-19

"Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

 

Messiah is the Greatest in the kingdom of heaven so He neither annulled the commandments nor taught others to do the same.

Matthew 28:1 uses the Sabbath as a reference to when "Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to look at the grave" where Messiah had been left. This is the last passage in the book of Matthew to reference the Sabbath.

 

Mark

Mark 1

Mark 1:21 tells us that Messiah taught in the synagogue on the Sabbath.

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Messiah taught in synagogues on the Sabbath. (Mark 1:21)

 

Mark 2

Mark 2:23-28 is the parallel passage of Matthew 12 where the Pharisees challenge Yeshua about His disciples picking heads of grain on the Sabbath.

Mark 2:23-28

And it happened that He was passing through the grainfields on the Sabbath, and His disciples began to make their way along while picking the heads of grain. The Pharisees were saying to Him, "Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the Sabbath?" And He said to them, "Have you never read what David did when he was in need and he and his companions became hungry; how he entered the house of God in the time of Abiathar the high priest, and ate the consecrated bread, which is not lawful for anyone to eat except the priests, and he also gave it to those who were with him?" Jesus said to them, "The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath."

 

This passage reiterates the points of the verses in Matthew and adds an additional piece of information: the Sabbath was made for man.

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Sustaining life is of greater priority than avoiding work on the Sabbath. (Mark 2:23-28)
  • The Sabbath was made for man and not man for the Sabbath. (Mark 2:27)
  • Yeshua (the Son of Man) is Lord of the Sabbath. (Mark 2:28)

 

Mark 3

Mark 3:2-5 is the parallel of the passage in Matthew 12 where Yeshua healed a man's hand on the Sabbath.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Healing on the Sabbath is lawful. (Mark 3:2-5)
  • It is lawful to do good by helping others on the Sabbath. (Mark 3:2-5)

 

Mark 6

Mark 6:2 also tells us that Messiah taught in the synagogue on the Sabbath.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Messiah taught in synagogues on the Sabbath. (Mark 6:2)

 

Mark 16

Mark 16:1-2 uses the Sabbath as a reference to when Mary Magdalene and other women brought spices to anoint the body of Messiah:

Mark 16:1-2

When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, bought spices, so that they might come and anoint Him. Very early on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb when the sun had risen.

 

In examining this passage you should note that the word "week" is highlighted. The Greek word sabbaton is used in the passage and is translated in the NASB as "week". Here is the Young's Literal Translation so that we can see the word usage better:

Mark 16:1-2 YLT

And the sabbath having past, Mary the Magdalene, and Mary of James, and Salome, bought spices, that having come, they may anoint him, and early in the morning of the first of the sabbath, they come unto the sepulchre, at the rising of the sun, and they said among themselves, `Who shall roll away for us the stone out of the door of the sepulchre?'

 

Mark, a devote Jew, referenced the days of the week as did other Jews: as a day in reference to the Sabbath. What we call "Sunday" is "one of the Sabbath". What we call "Monday" is "two of the Sabbath", etc. An example of this phrasing is found in a traditional recitation that precedes a daily reading from the Psalms:

HaYom yom rishon bashabat, shevo hayu halevi'im omerim bevayt hamikdash.

"This day is the first day of the Sabbath, on which the Levites would recite in the Holy Temple…"

Here is a list of the traditional Psalms that are read on each day of the week:

1st day of the Sabbath: Psalm 24

2nd day of the Sabbath: Psalm 48

3rd day of the Sabbath: Psalm 82

4th day of the Sabbath: Psalm 94

5th day of the Sabbath: Psalm 81

6th day of the Sabbath: Psalm 93

Sabbath: Psalm 92

 

Mark is simply using conventional Hebrew references to the days of the week. Mark 16:2 and other passages use this nomenclature. In these passages the word "week" will be highlighted.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • The Sabbath is used as a reference point to describe the days of the week. (Mark 16:2)

 

Mark 16:9 is the next passage where this convention:

Mark 16:9

Now after He had risen early on the first day of the week, He first appeared to Mary Magdalene, from whom He had cast out seven demons.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • The Sabbath is used as a reference point to describe the days of the week. (Mark 16:9)

 

Luke

Luke 4

Luke 4:16

And He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up; and as was His custom, He entered the synagogue on the Sabbath, and stood up to read.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Messiah taught in synagogues on the Sabbath. (Luke 4:16)

 

Luke 4:31

And He came down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee, and He was teaching them on the Sabbath;

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Messiah taught in synagogues on the Sabbath. (Luke 4:31,33)

 

Luke 6

Luke 6:1-5

Now it happened that He was passing through some grainfields on a Sabbath; and His disciples were picking the heads of grain, rubbing them in their hands, and eating the grain. But some of the Pharisees said, "Why do you do what is not lawful on the Sabbath?" And Jesus answering them said, "Have you not even read what David did when he was hungry, he and those who were with him, how he entered the house of God, and took and ate the consecrated bread which is not lawful for any to eat except the priests alone, and gave it to his companions?" And He was saying to them, "The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath."

 

Luke 6:1-5 is the parallel passage for Matthew 12 and Mark 2 where the Pharisees challenge Yeshua about His disciples picking heads of grain on the Sabbath. This passage reiterates the previous points of this event.

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Sustaining life (e.g. by eating) is of greater priority than avoiding work on the Sabbath. (Luke 6:1-5)
  • Yeshua (the Son of Man) is Lord of the Sabbath. (Luke 6:5)

 

Luke 6:6-10 is the parallel of the passages in Matthew 12 and Mark 3 where Yeshua healed a man's hand on the Sabbath.

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Healing on the Sabbath is lawful. (Luke 6:6-10)
  • It is lawful to do good on the Sabbath. (Luke 6:9-10)

 

Luke 13

Luke 13:10 again informs us that Messiah taught in the synagogue on the Sabbath.

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Messiah taught in synagogues on the Sabbath. (Luke 13:10)

 

This particular passage, however, has some additional insight regarding healing on the Sabbath:

Luke 13:10-17

And He was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. And there was a woman who for eighteen years had had a sickness caused by a spirit; and she was bent double, and could not straighten up at all. When Jesus saw her, He called her over and said to her, "Woman, you are freed from your sickness." And He laid His hands on her; and immediately she was made erect again and began glorifying God. But the synagogue official, indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, began saying to the crowd in response, "There are six days in which work should be done; so come during them and get healed, and not on the Sabbath day." But the Lord answered him and said, "You hypocrites, does not each of you on the Sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the stall and lead him away to water him? And this woman, a daughter of Abraham as she is, whom Satan has bound for eighteen long years, should she not have been released from this bond on the Sabbath day?" As He said this, all His opponents were being humiliated; and the entire crowd was rejoicing over all the glorious things being done by Him.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Healing on the Sabbath is lawful. (Luke 13:10-17)
  • Prohibition of healing on the Sabbath is hypocritical. (Luke 13:15)
  • Taking care of animals on the Sabbath is permitted. (Luke 13:15)
  • The healing of a woman held in bondage by Satan is appropriate on the Sabbath. (Luke 13:16)

 

Luke 14

Luke 14:1-5

It happened that when He went into the house of one of the leaders of the Pharisees on the Sabbath to eat bread, they were watching Him closely. And there in front of Him was a man suffering from dropsy. And Jesus answered and spoke to the lawyers and Pharisees, saying, "Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath, or not?" But they kept silent. And He took hold of him and healed him, and sent him away. And He said to them, "Which one of you will have a son or an ox fall into a well, and will not immediately pull him out on a Sabbath day?"

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Messiah went into the house of one of the leaders of the Pharisees on the Sabbath to eat bread (Luke 14:1)
  • Healing on the Sabbath is lawful. (Luke 14:3-4)
  • Pulling a son or ox out of the well (as an example of doing good) is allowed on the Sabbath day. (Luke 14:5)

 

Luke 18

In Luke 18 we find another instance of sabbaton being translated as week:

Luke 18:12

'I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.'

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • The Sabbath is used as a reference point to describe the days of the week. (Luke 18:12)

 

Luke 23

Luke 23:54-56

It was the preparation day, and the Sabbath was about to begin. Now the women who had come with Him out of Galilee followed, and saw the tomb and how His body was laid. Then they returned and prepared spices and perfumes. And on the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • The women who had come with Messiah out of the Galilee saw the tomb and how His body was laid before the Sabbath. (Luke 23:55)
  • The women prepared spices and perfumes for Messiah's body before the Sabbath. (Luke 23:55)
  • The women who had come with Messiah out of the Galilee rested on the Sabbath day according to the commandment. (Luke 23:56)

 

Luke 24

Luke 24:1

But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb bringing the spices which they had prepared.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • The Sabbath is used as a reference point to describe the days of the week. (Luke 24:1)

 

John

John 5

John 5:5-18

A man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he had already been a long time in that condition, He said to him, "Do you wish to get well?" The sick man answered Him, "Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, but while I am coming, another steps down before me." Jesus said to him, "Get up, pick up your pallet and walk." Immediately the man became well, and picked up his pallet and began to walk. Now it was the Sabbath on that day. So the Jews were saying to the man who was cured, "It is the Sabbath, and it is not permissible for you to carry your pallet." But he answered them, "He who made me well was the one who said to me, 'Pick up your pallet and walk.'" They asked him, "Who is the man who said to you, 'Pick up your pallet and walk'?" But the man who was healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had slipped away while there was a crowd in that place. Afterward Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, "Behold, you have become well; do not sin anymore, so that nothing worse happens to you." The man went away, and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well. For this reason the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because He was doing these things on the Sabbath. But He answered them, "My Father is working until now, and I Myself am working." For this reason therefore the Jews were seeking all the more to kill Him, because He not only was breaking the Sabbath, but also was calling God His own Father, making Himself equal with God.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Messiah healed on the Sabbath. (John 5:8-9)
  • Judaism in the first century prohibited carrying a pallet on the Sabbath. (John 5:10)
  • Certain Jews were persecuting Messiah because He healed on the Sabbath and told a man to pick up his pallet on the Sabbath. (John 5:16)
  • Messiah works on the Sabbath in the manner His Father works on the Sabbath. (John 5:17)
  • Messiah was breaking the Sabbath in the eyes of some Jews. (John 5:18)

 

John 7

John 7:14-24

But when it was now the midst of the feast Jesus went up into the temple, and began to teach. The Jews then were astonished, saying, "How has this man become learned, having never been educated?" So Jesus answered them and said, "My teaching is not Mine, but His who sent Me. If anyone is willing to do His will, he will know of the teaching, whether it is of God or whether I speak from Myself. He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but He who is seeking the glory of the One who sent Him, He is true, and there is no unrighteousness in Him. Did not Moses give you the Law, and yet none of you carries out the Law? Why do you seek to kill Me?" The crowd answered, "You have a demon! Who seeks to kill You?" Jesus answered them, "I did one deed, and you all marvel. For this reason Moses has given you circumcision (not because it is from Moses, but from the fathers), and on the Sabbath you circumcise a man. If a man receives circumcision on the Sabbath so that the Law of Moses will not be broken, are you angry with Me because I made an entire man well on the Sabbath? Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment."

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • On the Sabbath a man is circumcised and the day is not violated. (John 7:22)
  • Making an entire man well on the Sabbath does not violate the Sabbath. (John 7:23)

 

John 9

John 9:13-16

They brought to the Pharisees the man who was formerly blind. Now it was a Sabbath on the day when Jesus made the clay and opened his eyes. Then the Pharisees also were asking him again how he received his sight. And he said to them, "He applied clay to my eyes, and I washed, and I see." Therefore some of the Pharisees were saying, "This man is not from God, because He does not keep the Sabbath." But others were saying, "How can a man who is a sinner perform such signs?" And there was a division among them.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • Messiah healed a blind man on the Sabbath by making clay and putting it on his eyes. (John 9:14)
  • Some Jews thought that Messiah was not keeping the Sabbath. (John 9:16)
  • Some Jews thought Messiah was not from G-d because He did not keep the Sabbath according to their expectations and rules. (John 9:16)

 

John 19:31

John 19:31

Then the Jews, because it was the day of preparation, so that the bodies would not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day), asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • The Jews did not want bodies left on "the cross" [singular with the definite article] and asked Pilate that the legs of the men might be broken. (John 19:31)
  • The day Messiah died was the day before a "high Sabbath" [i.e. the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread (Exodus 12:15-20)]. (John 19:13)

 

John 20

John 20:1

Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came early to the tomb, while it was still dark, and saw the stone already taken away from the tomb.

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • The Sabbath is used as a reference point to describe the days of the week. (John 20:1)

 

John 20:19

So when it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and when the doors were shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, "Peace be with you."

 

Sabbath Fact List:

  • The Sabbath is used as a reference point to describe the days of the week. (John 20:19)

 

Let's move on to the Acts and Epistles and see what they can tell us about the Sabbath...

 

Torah Portion

unknown

 

 

or view this week's triennial cycle reading.

Today is

Yom Sheni, 24 Adar I, 5784

Monday, March 04, 2024

 

Learn more about this date in history.