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When Rules Get in the Way

Luke 13:16-17 “This woman that I healed is a true descendant of Abraham. But Satan has held her for 18 years. Surely it is not wrong for her to be made free from her sickness on a Sabbath day!" When Jesus said this, all those who were criticizing him felt ashamed of themselves. And all the people were happy for the wonderful things he was doing.

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When Rules Get in the Way


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It’s funny how prone we are to making rules about things. We see something that’s not quite right, so we make a rule to deal with it, but before you know it, all those rules become an incredible burden.

One of the easiest things for us to do, is to turn the Gospel of Grace, into a bunch of religious rules. Let me give you an example. Just after I became a Christian, I decided that I needed to be baptised. So, the pastor asked me, “And who would you like to have to baptise you?”

“What an odd question! Of course, it has to be you, right? “Well, no,” he said. “It can be anyone you want, who believes in Jesus.” See, right there, I’d assumed that there was some religious rule that said it had to be “the minister”.

It was the same back in Jesus’ day, only much worse. The religious leaders kept getting upset with Jesus for, wait for this, healing people on the Sabbath.

Luke 13:16-17 “This woman that I healed is a true descendant of Abraham. But Satan has held her for 18 years. Surely it is not wrong for her to be made free from her sickness on a Sabbath day!” When Jesus said this, all those who were criticizing him felt ashamed of themselves. And all the people were happy for the wonderful things he was doing.

I mean that’s crazy right?! This woman’s just been healed after 18 years and these religious nutters are worried that it happened on the Sabbath! Seriously?!

Come on, how easy is it for us to do the same; to make up religious rules, one, then another, then another … and before you know it the Gospel of Grace, the freedom that Jesus came to bring us, are nowhere to be seen. Stop making up silly rules.

That’s God’s Word. Fresh … for you … today.


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