I know – I haven’t written for Days One or Two of Light the World…but better late than never, right?
Light the World is a fun Advent Calendar with scriptures and ideas that promote service during this time of year when we think of the Savior’s birth.
“Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the Sabbath Day,” (Matthew 12:12
God designed the Sabbath Day as a day of rest, but that doesn’t mean that we should be idle on this day. Instead, we should use our time and talents to bless others.”
I have been in a little bit of a rut with my scripture study for the past few weeks, so this morning I decided that it would be good for me to study the scriptures used for the #lighttheworld campaign. The scripture listed for today was only a part of the verse. The entire verse of Matthew 12:12 reads:
“How much then is a man better than a sheep? Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the sabbath days.” – Matthew 12:12
So the context of this scripture is that the Pharisees ask the Savior if it is lawful for him to heal a man with a withered hand on the Sabbath.
Christ isn’t intimidated by the posturing of the Pharisees. We read what the Savior said next:
“And he said unto them, What man shall there be among you, that shall have one sheep, and if it fall into a pit on the sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it, and lift it out?
How much then is a man better than a sheep? Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the sabbath days.
Then saith he to the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it forth; and it was restored whole, like as the other.” – Matthew 12:11-13
So – I often think about the gospel in terms of those who don’t have any faith – and how they might perceive what the Savior teaches. And he asks the question, How much then is a man better than a sheep?
It’s an interesting question in a way. There are some people who might not think that people are any better than sheep – other than maybe we can reason and we are intellectual. Maybe some people would be offended that the Savior would imply that humans are better than sheep.
And, if we believed only in evolution, without any creator or God, then what is the answer to this question? If we are trying to explain what the Savior is teaching to those who don’t have faith, what is it that we say?
Well…the Savior’s question is valid when we remember the truth of the matter. We can’t look only at evolution because there is more to the creation of this world that chance and evolution. There IS a Creator! This is crucial to remember, too.
We have a Creator, and He is our Father. The Savior, Himself, assisted in this creation. We are children of God. This is why humans – men and women – are important! This is why the Savior responds with his example of saving a sheep and then compares it with serving a person.
We are children of God!
What a thing to believe and know. Do we understand what this means? I am a child of God. You are a child of God. We are all brothers and sisters of a loving God. When we remember this fact, then we are more prone to act as the Savior did – reaching out to serve those who are in need.
By the way – the sheep in this story is pulled out of the pit. This isn’t an “either or” situation. On Sabbath days, sheep are pulled out of pits. On Sabbath Days, people are healed. The Sabbath is a day of rest from our labors – to give us the opportunity to commune with our God through worship, connect with others in our families and community, and to give Christlike service to others.