Context for Matthew 11:25-12:21
Jesusâ€™ ministry was followed by the constant attempts of the teachers of the law to discredit Him and everything He was. What those teachers failed to understand is that they were debating with the very Word they tried to pervert, which Jesus revealed in the fact that He always pointed them back to the very scripture they tried to manipulate against Him.
Jesusâ€™ declaration that He is â€˜Lord of the Sabbathâ€™ shows us what it is that God truly desires from us. What God wants is for us to embrace our faith with our lives, dedicating ourselves to doing His will, not following rules with the hope that those rules will somehow save us.
This difference is subtle, yet it is a very important truth of our faith. We are saved by grace through faith in Jesusâ€™ redemptive work, and there is nothing we can do to achieve that faith or redemption through our own works. In this way, the law acts as a judge of our own sinful incapacity to do Godâ€™s will.
Yet, because of faith, we desire to do Godâ€™s will in our lives, which brings us back to the commands Jesus gave us. We do those things, then, not because we believe they will save us, but because we want to bring ourselves closer to Jesus through our faith by doing what He says.
And what He says is that He wants us to love Him with all of our heart, mind, and strength, and to do what is right by loving our neighbors as ourselves. By doing those things, we reveal Godâ€™s righteousness through our faith, doing what is right instead of adhering to mechanical rules that cannot save us.