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Matthew 12:1-8, Teachings of Jesus

Narrative Lectionary Key Verse for Today

I desire mercy and not sacrifice
— Matthew 12:7

NL Daily Devotion for Saturday, February 23, 2019

by Rev. Stefanie Fauth, Clergy Stuff


As humans we tend to hold tightly to written laws - but sometimes, laws are unjust or un-merciful.

At points in our history, the ownership of people was lawful. Discrimination based on the color of skin was legal. In some places, people are allowed to discriminate based on gender or by a person being part of the LGBTQ community.

What’s legal isn’t always right.

When we think about how we look for leaders, perhaps we should look for bold leaders willing to stand up for what is merciful, rather than what is legal.

Narrative Lectionary Daily Reading:

Plucking Grain on the Sabbath

At that time Jesus went through the cornfields on the sabbath; his disciples were hungry, and they began to pluck heads of grain and to eat.When the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, ‘Look, your disciples are doing what is not lawful to do on the sabbath.’ He said to them, ‘Have you not read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? He entered the house of God and ate the bread of the Presence, which it was not lawful for him or his companions to eat, but only for the priests. Or have you not read in the law that on the sabbath the priests in the temple break the sabbath and yet are guiltless? I tell you, something greater than the temple is here. But if you had known what this means, “I desire mercy and not sacrifice”, you would not have condemned the guiltless.For the Son of Man is lord of the sabbath.’

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