Sunday 21 August 2022

Bible Book:

‘And ought not this woman... be set free from this bondage on the sabbath day?’ (v. 16)

Luke 13:10-17 Sunday 21 August 2022

Psalm 103:1-8


There are two centres of interest in this passage: what happens to the woman and the reaction of the leader of the synagogue. It was apparently not unusual for a visitor to be invited to speak in a synagogue service, while the leader was responsible for conducting the worship with its traditional elements.

A modern reader may speculate about ‘what really happened’ to the woman. Was it miraculous and inexplicable? Or did Jesus possess, what some people today have, the ability simply by touch to sense pain in another person and impart relief? Either way for the woman it was a blessing from God, a release from evil.

For the synagogue leader, the important thing is that the rules of the sabbath, which severely limit what work could be done, have been broken. Jesus’ reply challenges that position.

To Ponder:

  • Where in today’s world is there a danger of letting rules stand in the way of compassion?
  • Is illness an evil or part of the nature of things?
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