By Yang Laidi I’m Yang Laidi, sixty-two years old this year. In 1985, because my husband had health problems, our […]
Knowing Jesus – Why Did the Lord Jesus Not Keep the Sabbath?
Previously, when I saw the scriptures recorded in the, “At that time went on the sabbath day through the corn; and his disciples were an hungered, and began to pluck the ears of corn and to eat. But when the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, Behold, your disciples do that which is not lawful to do on the sabbath day” (Matthew 12:1-2), I thought to myself: Why did the lead His disciples to the outdoors on the Sabbath although He clearly knew the Pharisees kept the laws and rules? Wouldn’t it be easy for the Pharisees to get a handle and attack and judge Him? Then why did the Lord Jesus do like this? These questions had been preying on my mind.
One day, I saw, “When the Lord Jesus came, He used His practical actions to communicate to people: God had departed the Age of Law and had begun new work, and this new work did not require observation of the Sabbath; when God came out from the confines of the Sabbath day, this was just a foretaste of His new work, and His truly great work was continuing to play out. When the Lord Jesus began His work, He had already left behind the shackles of the Age of Law, and had broken through the regulations and principles from that age. In Him, there was no trace of anything related to the law; He had cast it off entirely and no longer observed it, and He no longer required mankind to observe it. So here you see that the Lord Jesus went through the corn fields on the Sabbath; the Lord did not rest, but was outside working. This action of His was a shock to people’s conceptions and communicated to them that He no longer lived under the law, and that He had left the confines of the Sabbath and appeared in front of mankind and in their midst in a new image, with a new way of working. This action of His told people that He had brought with Him new work that began with going out from the law and going out of the Sabbath. When God carried out His new work, He no longer clung to the past, and He was no longer concerned about the regulations of the Age of Law. Neither was He affected by His work in the previous age, but He worked as usual on the Sabbath and when His disciples were hungry, they could pick ears of corn to eat. This was all very normal in God’s eyes. God could have a new beginning for much of the work that He wants to do and the things that He wants to say. Once He has a new start, He neither mentions His previous work again nor continues it. For God has His principles in His work. When He wants to begin new work, it is when He wants to bring mankind into a new stage of His work, and when His work has entered a higher phase. If people continue to act according to the old sayings or regulations or continue to hold fast to them, He will not commemorate or praise this. This is because He has already brought new work, and has entered a new phase of His work. When He initiates new work, He appears to mankind with a completely new image, from a completely new angle, and in a completely new way so that people can see different aspects of His disposition and what He has and is. This is one of His goals in His new work. God does not hold on to the old or take the beaten path; when He works and speaks it’s not as prohibitive as people imagine. In God, all is free and liberated, and there is no prohibitiveness, no constraints—what He brings to mankind is all freedom and liberation. … No matter what people say and no matter how they see or assess His new work, He will carry out His work with no qualms. He will not worry about anyone’s conceptions or fingers pointed at His work and words, or even their strong opposition and resistance to His new work. No one among all of creation can use human reason, or human imagination, knowledge, or morality to measure or define what God does, to discredit, or disrupt or sabotage His work. There is no prohibitiveness in His work and what He does, and it will not be constrained by any man, thing, or object, and it will not be disrupted by any hostile forces. In His new work, He is an ever-victorious King, and any hostile forces and all heresies and fallacies from mankind are all trampled under His footstool. No matter which new stage of His work He is carrying out, it must be developed and expanded in mankind’s midst, and it must be carried out unhindered in the entire universe until His great work has been completed. This is God’s almightiness and wisdom, and His authority and power. Thus, the Lord Jesus could openly go out and work on the Sabbath because in His heart there were no rules, and there was no knowledge or doctrine that originated from mankind. What He had was God’s new work and His way, and His work was the way to free mankind, to release them, to allow them to exist in the light, and to allow them to live.”
Through the revelations of God’s words, I came to understand that the reason why the Lord Jesus did not keep the Sabbath and chose to go out and work on that day was that He wanted to tell those who lived under the law that He had ended the old age and brought with Him new work. When God initiates the work of the new age, God will not hold fast to the old sayings or regulations, nor will He allow people to cling to them. Meanwhile, He also, in such a way, makes man understand His disposition and know that He is always new and never old. He never follows any doctrine or takes the beaten path. He does His work in accordance with His own plan and mankind’s present needs, not the slightest bit constrained or hindered by various regulations and man’s notions and imaginations. Thus, the Lord Jesus did not worry about how man would see His new work at all, nor did He worry about criticism. He still did the work of His plan as usual. In Him, all is free and liberated. It could be said that this action of the Lord Jesus is the true expression and revelation of God’s inherent disposition as well as the manifestation of the wisdom in His work. It was just because the Pharisees did not realize God is an ever-new and never-old God as well as a God of wisdom and wonder that they limited God to the old rules and doctrines, and did their utmost to search for handles against the Lord Jesus, and moreover, nailed the innocent Lord Jesus to the cross on the charge of His not following the law of the Old Testament. In consequence, they received God’s righteous punishment and curse. It is perceived that if man does not know God’s disposition or His working principles, but rather always checks God’s new work against His former work and limits God’s work to old regulations and doctrines as well as to his own notions and imaginations, then he will easily make the mistake of delineating and resisting God and what awaits him ultimately will only be God’s wrath and punishment.
Similarly, as required by the need of corrupt mankind, today the incarnate God has done a deepened and uplifted work on the basis of the Lord Jesus’ work, expressing words to judge, chastise, and purify man as well as showing man the path to achieve dispositional change. When some religious leaders hear’s work of the last days, they do not treat it with an attitude of seeking and investigating it, but instead they measure Almighty God’s work by each and every word of the Bible. If it matches the words in the Bible, then they will accept it; if not, then they will oppose and reject it. In their own conceptions and imaginations, if God comes but is not called Jesus, then He is not the returned Lord; if God comes but does not bestow His boundless grace and blessings upon man with His merciful and loving disposition, then He is absolutely not the returned Lord. Therefore, man defines God’s work in their notions and imaginations once again, ultimately walking the path of the Pharisees. Nevertheless, God’s new work is not affected by this in the least. Those who truly believe in God, seek God and thirst for God’s appearance all come out from their own notions and imaginations and finally meet the coming of the Lord with a seeking and obedient attitude.
From the facts of God’s work, it can be seen that God has been doing His work according to His own plan and His wisdom all the time. In addition, regardless of in what manner God does His work, it’s all for the better salvation of man, and also for man to be liberated by the truth, which is most beneficial to man. Therefore, we should not define God by our notions or restrict God with our own thoughts. Instead, we should put aside our own conceptions to seek God’s appearance, only through which can we keep up with God’s footsteps and obtain God’s salvation. This is the sense and the reverence for God that should be, at the very least, possessed by a created being.
God’s words say, “Man should not define the work of God; moreover, man cannot define the work of God. In the eyes of God, man is smaller than an ant, so how can man fathom God’s work? Those who are constantly saying, ‘God does not work in this or that way’ or ‘God is like this or that’—are they not all arrogant? We should all know that people, who are of the flesh, have all been corrupted by Satan. It is their nature to oppose God, and they are not on a parity with God, much less can they offer counsel for the work of God. How God guides man is the work of God Himself. Man should submit, and should not hold such and such a view, for man is but dust. Since we try to seek God, we should not superimpose our conceptions on the work of God for God’s consideration, least of all should we employ our corrupt disposition to deliberately try to oppose the work of God. Would that not make us antichrists? How could such people say that they believe in God? Since we believe that there is a God, and since we wish to satisfy Him and to see Him, we should seek the way of truth, and should look for a way to be compatible with God. We should not stand in stiff-necked opposition to God; what good could come of such actions?” “God makes His own choices and has His own plans when He does His work; moreover, He has His own objectives, and His own methods. It is not necessary for Him to discuss the work He does with man or to seek the advice of man, much less notify each and every person of His work. This is the disposition of God and, moreover, should be recognized by everyone. If you desire to witness the appearance of God, if you wish to follow the footprints of God, then you must first transcend your own conceptions. You must not demand that God do this or that, much less should you place Him within your own confines and limit Him to your own conceptions. Instead, you should ask how you should seek the footprints of God, how you should accept the appearance of God, and how you should submit to the new work of God; that is what should be done by man. Since man is not the truth, and is not possessed of the truth, man should seek, accept, and obey.”
I used to read the story that the Lord Jesus and His disciples pick ears of corn to eat on Sabbath. At that time, I didn’t know His will of doing so. After reading this article, I finally understand that the Lord Jesus took practical action to let people know: He had come out from the Age of Law and did new work, so people needn’t keep rules or abide by any laws. From this we can see that all His work is released freely, He is not constrained by any rules or people, matters, and things because He is always new and never old. However, the Pharisees didn’t know this but defined God with the old laws and theories. Finally, they made a huge mistake and faced God’s righteous punishment. This also reminds us to draw a lesson of the Pharisees’ failure at the crucial time of the Lord’s second coming. We need to have a humble and seeking heart to accept and obey the Lord no matter in what manner He comes back. Only in this way, we can receive the approval of the Lord. Thanks for the author’s sharing. If you have other understanding and new light about this Bible story, you’re welcome to have a real-time chat with us via the online chat window at the bottom of the website or send an email to [email protected]. We sincerely hope to exchange the experience and knowledge of belief in the Lord and seek His will together with you.