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Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of June 29, 2008

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  • Adam DeBaugh
    Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of June 29, 2008 ********** As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press, here is a selection from our book of daily
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 28, 2008
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      Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of June 29, 2008


      As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho
      Press, here is a selection from our book of daily
      devotions, "Living as the Beloved: One Day at a
      Time," by the Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.

      Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
      meditation. We hope you will be blessed.

      Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.

      Lord of the Sabbath

      "For the Son of man is lord of the sabbath."
      Matthew 12:8

      The disciples of Jesus were hungry. We find them
      traveling on the Jewish Sabbath. Then they broke
      religious laws by eating grain in the fields. The
      Pharisees (Jewish religious leaders) confront Jesus
      on the spot, "Look! Your disciples are doing what
      is unlawful on the Sabbath" (Matthew 12:2 NIV).

      Jesus gives them a lesson from history and
      reinterprets their ancient story of beloved
      David. Many years ago, David was fleeing for
      his life. He and his companions illegally ate
      consecrated bread. Jesus hammers home his point
      and clearly lets it be known that "one greater
      than the temple is here." And then he quotes
      Hebrew scriptures (Hosea 6:6; Micah 6:6-8 NIV)
      to reinforce his teachings, "I desire mercy,
      not sacrifice."

      Jesus then makes a significant revolutionary
      statement about himself, "For the Son of Man
      is Lord of the Sabbath." The expression, "Son
      of Man," was Jesus' most common title for himself.
      It is found 81 times in the Gospels and was only
      used by Jesus. But what does it mean for twenty-
      first century readers unfamiliar with the Jewish
      theological understanding of this audacious and
      astonishing title? Why were some listeners
      outraged and religiously offended, and others
      overjoyed and eager to learn more?

      For starters, the Son of Man is a mysterious
      heavenly figure found in the Old Testament book
      of Daniel (7:13-14), entrusted with divine authority,
      glory, and sovereign power from God for use during
      the final judgment of the world. This title is
      every bit as powerful as the theological title,
      "Christ," meaning Messiah, or God's anointed one.
      Jesus also used "Son of Man" as an expression of
      his humanity. He experienced hunger and thirst,
      discouragement and exhilaration, joy and sorrow,
      temptations and frustrations. This is why Jesus
      can fully identify with our human condition with
      sovereign power and compassion, helping us during
      our times of need.

      Who is Jesus? He is obviously more than a healer
      and teacher. Claiming to be the "Son of Man" and
      "Lord of the Sabbath," he has the authority to
      overturn Sabbath laws. What will happen next?
      How does this affect our personal lives? Where
      are you in this story? Are you outraged and deeply
      offended by this teaching or eager to learn more?

      God, I ask that you bless my understanding about
      Jesus and his self-proclaimed titles, "Son of Man"
      and "Lord of the Sabbath." Give me a renewed
      appreciation of Jesus and his teachings. Transform
      my life with this knowledge, I pray.

      Grace and peace,

      Chi Rho Press

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