The Way DAY 22 - Respond Like Jesus

DAY 22 - Respond Like Jesus

Luke 6:1-5

How does Jesus interact with people who disagree with him?

First, Jesus looks for common ground. Since he and the Pharisees both look to Scripture as an authority, Jesus cites a Bible story featuring King David. Their hero broke the rules, just like Jesus! At this point in his ministry, Jesus patiently looks for common ground even with people whose motives are bad.

Second, Jesus sees the heart of Scripture. If you read other versions of this story in Mark 2 or Matthew 12, Jesus says, “The Sabbath was made for humanity, not humanity for the Sabbath.” This day of rest should bless, not stress, people. It’s God’s gift, not a burden. You can make the Bible say almost anything, but Jesus teaches us to find the heart of Scripture. We do that by asking, “How does this part fit into the Bible’s big story and connect to Jesus?” The heart of that story is how God saves us through Jesus Christ. That’s one reason why Jesus says, “The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.” Jesus is the key to the Bible.

Third, Jesus is responsive, not combative or reactive. He doesn’t pick a fight or mistreat the Pharisees, even though they “were looking for a reason to accuse Jesus” (Lk 6:7). Some people - even some Christians - are combative. Some are led by their emotions, for better or worse. Jesus models a better way.

Finally, Jesus is comfortable with ambiguity. He doesn’t give the Pharisees a clear answer to their question (v.2). He never gives a list of what does or doesn’t count as work on the Sabbath. Compared to the rigidity of the Pharisees, Jesus is flexible. Jesus often leaves room for people to make up their own minds.

Imagine how some of your conflicts might be different if Jesus were in the conflict for you.

Think of a conflict you’ve recently had. How might it have been different if you, or the other party, acted then more like Jesus acts in Luke 6?

Lord, you treat with such gentleness and mercy. We don’t deserve it. Help me to respond like you when I’m in conflict with someone. Amen.