3 Another time Jesus went into the synagogue, and a man with a shriveled hand was there. 2 Some of them were looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, so they watched him closely to see if he would heal him on the Sabbath. 3 Jesus said to the man with the shriveled hand, “Stand up in front of everyone.”
4 Then Jesus asked them, “Which is lawful on the Sabbath: to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” But they remained silent.
5 He looked around at them in anger and, deeply distressed at their stubborn hearts, said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was completely restored. 6 Then the Pharisees went out and began to plot with the Herodians how they might kill Jesus.
Why was the man’s hand shriveled? Why did he go to the synagogue? Was he there specifically because he believed Jesus could heal him?
Some non-canonical sources suggest this man was a stone mason who could not work and support his family with his hand in such shape. The man came to God’s house seeking God’s help.
On the other side were the Pharisees, who were so hard hearted that they totally missed the point of God’s Word. They were so bitter and vengeful that they did not have room in their hearts for the love of Jesus, nor did they have compassion for their fellow man who was suffering under such hopeless circumstances. In contrast to their scheming and plotting in the shadows, Jesus had the man stand up right in front of them and asked a a direct question. They were so sinful and self-absorbed they could not see the evil in their priorities. The Pharisees were outraged by Jesus’ intent to heal a man on the Sabbath, while they had no sense of guilt regarding their desire to murder Jesus. How messed up is that?
Jesus proved that it is always the right time to do the right thing. There is no record of Jesus ever taking a poll to decide his next action. Jesus always does what is right and we should devote ourselves to following His example. On the other hand, the Pharisees went and entered into a treaty with the Herodians (ruthless barbarians who would kill their own family members for the slightest offense) to assassinate Jesus. When determining what is right, a good indicator is motive. It is always good to ask yourself: Why am I doing this?