Monthly Archives: March 2013

Jesus and the Sabbath

The Jews made charges that Jesus broke the Sabbath but they were not able to establish their charge. The basic charge was that Jesus was working in violation of the Mosaic law (Leviticus 23:3). Here is a list of the specific instances of events that took place on the Sabbath. Read the full accounts to see how Jesus responded.

  • Healed a man at the pool of Bethesda (John 5:1-9, 18; Jesus replied to accusations (John 7:21-24).
  • Healed the blind man (John 9:1-14).
  • Answered charges made against His disciples (Matthew 12:1-8; Mark 2:23-28; Luke 6:1-6).
  • Healed a man with a withered hand (Luke 6:6-11).
  • Healed the woman who was bent over (Luke 13:10-17).
  • He questioned the Pharisees regarding healing on the Sabbath and they could not answer Him. He healed the man with dropsy (Luke 14:1-5).
  • He taught in the synagogue in His “home town” on the Sabbath (Mark 6:1-6).

The photo below shows the interior of the model synagogue at the Nazareth Village.

Interior of the Nazareth Village Synagogue. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

Interior of the Nazareth Village Synagogue. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

The account of Jesus reading in the synagogue at Nazareth is recorded in Luke 4:16-21, with the reaction in the following verses.

And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. And as was his custom, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and he stood up to read. And the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” And he rolled up the scroll and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. And he began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” (Luke 4:16-21 ESV)

Horses in the Golan Heights

Last September we stopped in the Golan Heights at the overlook east to Kuneitra, Syria. A few horses were being pastured in the area. Mount Hermon is visible to the north.

Horses in the Golan Heights. Mount Hermon in the distance. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

Horses in the Golan Heights. Mount Hermon in the distance. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

This area is included in the description of the victories of the Israelites.

Now these are the kings of the land whom the people of Israel defeated and took possession of their land beyond the Jordan toward the sunrise, from the Valley of the Arnon to Mount Hermon, with all the Arabah eastward: (Joshua 12:1 ESV)

In search of Barnabas

A recent article (here) in the York [Pennsylvania] Daily Record features the research of Messiah College professor Dr. Michael Cosby. Cosby received a Fulbright Grant to do this research in Cyprus, a place associated with the life of Barnabas.

Barnabas is best known to most of us because of his association with the Apostle Paul on the first missionary journey. He is mentioned more than 20 times in the Book of Acts. Other than that, he is mentioned 3 times in Galatians 2, and once each in 1 Corinthians and Colossians.

We understand from Luke’s account that Barnabas, also known as Joseph, was a Levite of Cyprus (Acts 4:36). The first stop on the First Journey was at Salamis on the eastern end of the Mediterranean island of Cyprus (Acts 13:1-5). There the preachers spoke in the synagogue of the Jews, and later on the western end of the island at Paphos.

When Paul and Barnabas had a dispute prior to the Second Journey, Barnabas took his cousin Mark and went to Cyprus (Acts 15:36-41).

Nothing else is mentioned in the Bible about Barnabas and the island of Cyprus. But a great amount of tradition has grown up on the island. It is this tradition that Prof. Cosby studied, and he researched the association of the tradition to the modern Greek Orthodox Church of Cyprus, and the privileges granted to the Cypriot archbishops.

Having just visited Cyprus last year I find this a fascinating article. Perhaps you will enjoy it.

According to a tradition dating back to 488 A.D., the sepulcher of Barnabas was discovered by Anthemios, the Archbishop of Constantia and placed in a church he built near the tomb. The photo below shows the now-empty church near the ruins of Roman Salamis.

The Church of Barnabas at Salamis. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

The Church of Barnabas at Salamis. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

Salamis is now located in the the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, or as the folks in the south of Cyprus say, “the occupied territory.”