Matthew 12:1-14

The Pharisees watch what Jesus does on the day of rest

1 On a Jewish day of rest, Jesus was walking through some fields where wheat was growing. His disciples were hungry. So they began to pick some of the grains of wheat. They began to eat them. 2 While the disciples were picking the grains, some Pharisees saw them. They said to Jesus, ‘Look at what your disciples are doing! It is against God's Law to do that on our day of rest.’

3 Jesus replied, ‘You have certainly read about what David did one day. He and the men who were with him were hungry. 4 David went into the temple. He ate the special bread that was there. He also gave some of it to his men to eat as well. But it is against God's Law for anyone except the priests to eat that special bread.

12:4See 1 Samuel 21.

5 Also, you certainly know what God's Law says about the priests. They work in the temple, even on the day of rest. They have not obeyed the Law about the day of rest. But God's Law tells us that they have not done anything that is wrong. 6 But I tell you this. There is someone here now who has greater authority even than the temple. 7 You should understand what the Bible teaches. God says there, “I want people to be kind to each other. I do not just want them to offer sacrifices to me.” If you had understood this, then you would not have said to me, “Your disciples are doing something wrong.” 8 The Son of Man has authority over the Law about the day of rest.’

9 Then Jesus left that place. He went into the Jewish meeting place. 10 A man was there. His hand was very small and weak, so he could not use it. Some Pharisees asked Jesus, ‘Is it right to make someone well again on our day of rest?’ They wanted to find a reason to say that Jesus was doing wrong things.

11 Jesus said to them, ‘Maybe one of you has a sheep that falls into a deep hole on our day of rest. What will you do? You will take hold of it and you will lift it out of the hole. 12 You know that a man is much more valuable than a sheep. So it is right for us to do good things on our day of rest.’

13 Then Jesus said to the man with the weak hand, ‘Lift up your hand.’ So the man lifted up his hand and it became well again. It was now as strong as his other hand. 14 Then the Pharisees went out from the meeting place. They began to talk to each other about how they could kill Jesus.