Jesus at a Pharisee’s House
14 One Sabbath, when Jesus went to eat in the house of a prominent Pharisee, he was being carefully watched. 2 There in front of him was a man suffering from abnormal swelling of his body. 3 Jesus asked the Pharisees and experts in the law, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath or not?” 4 But they remained silent. So taking hold of the man, he healed him and sent him on his way.
5 Then he asked them, “If one of you has a child or an ox that falls into a well on the Sabbath day, will you not immediately pull it out?” 6 And they had nothing to say.
Observations & Reflections
This story of Jesus healing at the Pharisee’s house is only in Luke’s gospel. However, there is a very familiar story about healing on the sabbath in Matthew.
Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue, 10 and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to bring charges against Jesus, they asked him, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?”
11 He said to them, “If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? 12 How much more valuable is a person than a sheep!Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.”
13 Then he said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other. 14 But the Pharisees went out and plotted how they might kill Jesus. (Matthew 12:9-14)
However, these are two very different events. Moreover, Luke also records a sabbath healing of this nature in chapter 13.
Either way, Luke being the only gospel writer to mention this story means that his source was not available to the other gospel writers to they chose not to use the story. If the source was only available to Luke then that source falls into the category of “pro-Luke”.
The story itself is a power statement on where our values should lie. Like the good samaritan, the Lord wants us to care more about the welfare of our neighbors than making sure we follow man made laws.
We forget sometimes that rules (even the sabbath) were made for the welfare of man. They were designed to help us, not to use against each other.