Sabbath

One sabbath he was going through the cornfields; and as they made their way his disciples began to pluck heads of grain.

THERE is such a sense of freedom in this image of Jesus walking among the corn fields with his disciples. It is a sense of freedom which pervades everything Jesus says and does in the Gospels. It is the freedom that sees what truly is. The freedom that walks in the cool breeze of the evening, in the Garden, with God, naked and not ashamed.

This is the meaning of sabbath. As usual, the Gospels’ self-righteous ones have got it all wrong. Their religion has constructed rules, albeit with the desire to please God. But the self-righteous ones have forgotten that what pleases God is human beings humbly receiving God’s gifts of love, so that they too can simply live and love.

The self-righteous ones do sense that they can never deserve, in their own right, God’s grace. They could never be righteous enough. No one could. And so the self-righteous ones are afraid of God. They think they need to make God’s gifts into rules. If they observe the rules and don’t step out of line, then God will be gracious to them, forgiving, rewarding, or at least not condemning.

This is religious thinking. It is wrong thinking. It is the kind of thinking that makes an idol out of ritual and surface faith. It is a pretense. An act. It is the kind of thinking that blinds the heart to the presence of God, who is right here, with us, within us, within all creation, right now, always.

The Bridegroom, the Messiah, God, Jeshua – God Saves – is there in the cornfield. His disciples, the wedding guests, are enjoying the fresh corn, mindful no doubt of the freedom of sabbath. The religious ones, the upstanding ones, don’t even recognize him. They simply scoff because God does not respond in the expected way to their puerile distortions of Grace.

And God’s response? God tries again, with patience and love, to teach his slow-minded children, “The sabbath was given to you, not you to the sabbath”.

Shalom.

Tangnefedd.

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~ by Fr Tim Ardouin on February 14, 2015.

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