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The only three persons who count

Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on a Sabbath. And look and see, there was a woman who had had a spirit of weakness for eighteen years. She was bent together and could not un-stoop at all. Seeing her, Jesus called her over and said to her, “Woman, you are untied from your weakness.” Then he placed his hands on her and immediately she was straightened up. And she glorified God. But the head of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, answering, said to the people, “There are six days in which it is necessary to work. Come on those days and be healed, and not on the Sabbath day.” (Luke 13: 10)
The year is around AD 30. The place Galilee, which is now part of Israel. Only three people are featured: Jesus, a woman and a man.

The woman’s “spirit of weakness” had doubled her over. Human beings are like that. They have a spirit of weakness regarding all other humans. They have an unavoidable bias towards themselves. Asked to look at a group photo they immediately search out their one face. Like all of us, she needs to be un-tied from the self which fetters her.

“Far too often in this life we are interested in only three persons: me, myself and I’ (Anon.)
The synagogue head is in the same position. He needs un-tying. His realm – where he is head – is the synagogue. And the synagogue is THE place to go on a Sabbath when work is prohibited. Nothing must interfere with his authority.


Jesus did respond to him in some detail. What is wonderful is that the woman, creased over for 18 years, had received strength to walk upright.

“It is the desiring of our own way which leads to every other sin in the world.” (Donald Grey Barnhouse, American Pastor, 1895-1960)

And others were listening, seeing and working things out.

Sinner Syvret

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