Lord of the Sabbath

The Pharisees are again making inquiries about this religious figure who is garnering attention from the people. As many scholars have noted, Jesus is more akin to than Pharisees that the other religious groups of the day – scribes, zealots, Sadducees, and others. And yet he continues to surprise/shock them as he claims the authority to forgive sins (Mark 2:5-7), eats with sinners, eats when he (apparently) should be fasting (v.18). Observant Jews were expected to fast twice each week. Observant Jews were also expected to keep holy the Sabbath and not work. Continue reading

The Expectations Build

This coming Sunday is the 3rd Sunday of Ordinary Time and we continue our study of the beginning of the public ministry of Jesus at the synagogue in his home town of Nazareth.

He came to Nazareth, where he had grown up, and went according to his custom into the synagogue on the sabbath day. He stood up to read 17 and was handed a scroll of the prophet Isaiah. He unrolled the scroll and found the passage where it was written: The Gospel of Mark has a similar account but records it later in Jesus’ public ministry near the end of the ministry in Galilee (Mark 6:1-6a). Luke reports the account at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry. In doing so, Luke highlights the initial admiration (Luke 4:22) and subsequent rejection of Jesus (Luke 4:28-29) and presents it as a foreshadowing of the whole future ministry of Jesus. Continue reading