“So, because Jesus was doing these things on the Sabbath, the Jewish leaders began to persecute him. 17 In his defense Jesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working.” 18 For this reason they tried all the more to kill him; not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.” John 5.16-18
It took some confidence for Jesus, who in the midst of the religious leaders of the day, to equate himself with God. We who believe understand this to be true, but for those listening to his teaching, they must have been shocked.
Jesus was a rebel which is one thing I like about him. He didn’t obey the Mosaic Law just because it was written in the Torah. Jesus obeyed God because he was God and he knew his obedience was to himself. He had the authority to obey or not obey. And his actions in breaking the Sabbath was obedience in the making.
When asked why Jesus was healing on the Sabbath, he gave a defense — “My Father is always at work…” ‘Say what?’ replied the Jews, ‘Is he saying God is his Father?’ And for this reason, they began to look for ways to kill him. Rather extreme don’t you think?
So they tried to kill him because he was making himself equal to God and breaking the Sabbath. And eventually, they succeeded, but only for three days. For on the third, he who death could not hold-who sin could not contain, resurrected from the dead into new life.
Jesus is not only equal to God but he is God. He is the One who God in the Flesh who brings light and life to all who believe.
Do you believe?
“O Lord God, I love to read your Word and praise your name. Thank you for the stories about your life and your teaching. Thank you that your Word is alive and active. Come now, Holy Spirit, fill me with your power and love. Help me be your messenger to the world so they might know the love of a resurrected king. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen