- Friday, 20 July 2018 -
Friday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time
Readings of day

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 12:1-8.

Jesus was going through a field of grain on the sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick the heads of grain and eat them.
When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, "See, your disciples are doing what is unlawful to do on the sabbath."
He said to them, "Have you not read what David did when he and his companions were hungry,
how he went into the house of God and ate the bread of offering, which neither he nor his companions but only the priests could lawfully eat?
Or have you not read in the law that on the sabbath the priests serving in the temple violate the sabbath and are innocent?
I say to you, something greater than the temple is here.
If you knew what this meant, 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned these innocent men.
For the Son of Man is Lord of the sabbath."
Copyright © Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, USCCB

Aphrahat
The Lord of the Sabbath

The Lord asked the children of Israel through the mediation of his servant, Moses, to observe the Sabbath day, saying to them: “Six days you may labor and do all your work but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God” (Ex 20:9-10)... And he admonished them: “You are to rest, both you and your servant and your maidservant, your ox and your ass.” He even added: “The hireling and alien are to rest also along with every beast that toils in your service” (cf. Ex 23:12)... The Sabbath has not been imposed as a test or choice between life and death, righteousness and sin, like those other commandments by which we live or die. No the Sabbath, in its time, was given to the people to the end that they might rest – both man and beast... So now listen to what that Sabbath is that is pleasing to God. Isaiah tells us: “Give rest to the weary” (28:12), and elsewhere: “Those who keep the Sabbath free from profanation” are “those who choose what pleases me and hold fast to my covenant” (56:2.4)... The Sabbath is of no benefit to evildoers, murderers or thieves. But those who choose what pleases God and keep their hands from evil: in them God dwells. He makes of them his dwelling in accordance with his word: “I will set my dwelling among you and walk in your midst” (Lv 26:11; 2Cor 6:16)... Let us too, then, faithfully keep God's Sabbath, that is to say the Sabbath that pleases his heart. Thus shall we enter into the great Sabbath, the Sabbath of heaven and earth when every creature will take its rest.

Expositions, no.13, 1-2.13 (cf SC 359, p. 589f.)