Another time Jesus went into the synagogue, and a man with a shriveled hand was there. 2 Some of them were looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, so they watched him closely to see if he would heal him on the Sabbath. 3 Jesus said to the man with the shriveled hand, “Stand up in front of everyone.” 4 Then Jesus asked them, “Which is lawful on the Sabbath: to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” But they remained silent.5 He looked around at them in anger and, deeply distressed at their stubborn hearts, said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was completely restored. 6 Then the Pharisees went out and began to plot with the Herodians how they might kill Jesus. Mark 3:1-6 NIVClearly Jesus had been performing miracles on a regular basis because the Pharisees were stalking Jesus so that they could “catch him in the act” of healing someone on the Sabbath. Jesus knew that He was being watched. It says in verse 5 that Jesus looked around at them in anger and distressed at their stubborn hearts. He then healed the man with a shriveled hand, on the Sabbath, in front of everyone including the very people who were looking for a reason to destroy Jesus.
I have read and reread this passage. It makes me so very sad because the Pharisees were so intent on “catching Jesus” breaking the rules that they missed the whole event! They were blinded to the fact that He was there to heal and save! He even tried to reveal it to them when He asked in verse 4, “Which is lawful on the Sabbath: to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” He was there healing someone on the Sabbath while they were there plotting, on the Sabbath, out an evil plan to kill Jesus. They were blind! They were so obsessed with trying to find fault in Jesus that they missed witnessing another miracle of Jesus! He healed someone right before their very eyes and all they could see him doing was “violating the Sabbath” when in all reality they were doing the very thing they were accusing him of doing.
Recently, I think of all of the times I hear people quote “judge not lest you be judged!” when in all reality they are guilty of doing the very thing that they are accusing others of doing, just like that day when Jesus was there to heal the man with the shriveled hand in the synagogue. I think how sad it must make Jesus when people are missing the whole point of Him coming to heal and save everyone.
Today, it seems as though people, are so busy looking for offensive behaviors that they become blinded to the million examples of kindness and love that surround them each day. Sometimes we need to do a vision check! You don’t want to become so focused or jaded on one thing that you become blinded to so many other wonderful things! When you become driven by one event in your life then not only are you cheating yourself of many blessings but you are cheating others of the blessings that you can to be to them.
So today I challenge you to do a vision check! Are you focusing on one small field of vision or are you looking beyond the small picture in your immediate world? You see, Jesus came to heal, save and reach the lost and wounded. He didn’t come for just the pretty, the rich or royal people. He came for the very Pharisees, who were watching Him just so they could catch Him healing a man on the Sabbath. Jesus died for everyone. His desire is not that one person would perish but that everyone would choose everlasting life through Him.
I want to love how Jesus loves. He loves everyone, unconditionally, beyond their flaws or shortcomings.