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Jesus told us to Follow God's Commandments and that He Wants Mercy; not Sacrifice.



A man came up to Jesus, saying, "‘Teacher, what good deed must I do, to have eternal life?’ And he said to him, ‘Why do you ask me about what is good? One there is who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments.’ He said to him, ‘Which?’ And Jesus said, ‘You shall not kill, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not bear false witness, honor your father and mother, and you shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ The young man said to him, ‘All these I have observed; what do I still lack?’ Jesus said to him, ‘If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.’ When the young man heard this, he went away sorrowful; for he had great possessions. And Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Truly, I say to you, it will be hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again, I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God." (Matt. 19:16-24)


Jesus stated during the Sermon on the Mount, "Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. (Matt. 5:17-20)


Jesus said, “‘He who has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me; and he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.’ Judas (not Iscariot) said to him, ‘Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?’ Jesus answered him, ‘If a man loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. He who does not love me does not keep my words; and the word which you hear is not mine but the Father's who sent me.’” (John 14:21-24)



Jesus said, “The law and the prophets were in effect until John came; since then the good news of the kingdom of God is proclaimed, and everyone tries to enter it by force. But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away, than for one stroke of a letter in the law to be dropped.” (Luke 16:16-17)


When asked about working on the Sabbath, Jesus said, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath; so, the Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath.” (Mark 2:27)


“Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. And just then there appeared a woman with a spirit that had crippled her for eighteen years. She was bent over and was quite unable to stand up straight. When Jesus saw her, he called her over and said, ‘Woman, you are set free from your ailment.’ When he laid his hands on her, immediately she stood up straight and began praising God. But the leader of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had cured on the Sabbath, kept saying to the crowd, ‘There are six days on which work ought to be done; come on those days and be cured, and not on the Sabbath day.’ But the Lord answered him and said, ‘You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the Sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the manger, and lead it away to give it water? And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan bound for eighteen long years, be set free from this bondage on the Sabbath day?’ When he said this, all his opponents were put to shame; and the entire crowd was rejoicing at all the wonderful things that he was doing. " (Matt.13:10-17)


Version 1: “And there are gathered together unto him the Pharisees, and certain of the scribes, who had come from Jerusalem, and had seen that some of his disciples ate their bread with defiled, that is, unwashed, hands. (For the Pharisees, and all the Jews, except they wash their hands diligently, eat not, holding the tradition of the elders; and when they come from the marketplace, except they bathe themselves, they eat not; and many other things there are, which they have received to hold, washings of cups, and pots, and brazen vessels.) And the Pharisees and the scribes ask him, ‘Why walk not thy disciples according to the tradition of the elders, but eat their bread with defiled hands?’ And he said unto them, ‘Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honors me with their lips, But their heart is far from me. But in vain do they worship me, teaching as their doctrines the precepts of men. Ye leave the commandment of God and hold fast the tradition of men.’ And he said unto them, ‘Full well do ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your tradition. For Moses said, ‘Honor thy father and thy mother; and, He that speaks evil of father or mother, let him die the death’: but ye say, If a man shall say to his father or his mother, That wherewith you might have been profited by me is Corban, that is to say, Given to God; ye no longer suffer him to do aught for his father or his mother; making void the word of God by your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things ye do’ And he called to him the multitude again, and said unto them, ‘Hear me all of you, and understand: there is nothing from without the man, that going into him can defile him; but the things which proceed out of the man are those that defile the man. If any man hath ears to hear, let him hear.’ And when he was entered into the house from the multitude, his disciples asked of him the parable. And he said unto them, ‘Are ye so without understanding also? Perceive ye not, that whatsoever from without goes into the man, because it goes not into his heart, but into his belly, and goes out into the draught?’ This he said, making all meats clean. And he said, ‘That which proceeds out of the man that defiles the man. For from within, out of the heart of men, evil thoughts precede, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, coveting, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, railing, pride, foolishness: all these evil things proceed from within, and defile the man. (Mark 7: 1-23)


Version 2: “Then Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, ‘Why do your disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat.’ He answered them, ‘And why do you transgress the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition? For God commanded, `Honor your father and your mother,' and `He who speaks evil of father or mother, let him surely die.' But you say, `If anyone tells his father or his mother, what you would have gained from me is given to God, he need not honor his father.' So, for the sake of your tradition, you have made void the word of God. You hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy of you, when he said: `This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the precepts of men.’ And he called the people to him and said to them, "Hear and understand. It is not what goes into the mouth defiles a man, but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man." Then the disciples came and said to him, "Do you know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this saying?" He answered, "Every plant which my heavenly Father has not planted will be rooted up. Let them alone; they are blind guides. And if a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit." But Peter said to him, "Explain the parable to us." And he said, "Are you also still without understanding? Do you not see that whatever goes into the mouth passes into the stomach, and so passes on? But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a man. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a man; but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man." (Matt.15:1-20)


“While he was speaking, a Pharisee asked him to dine with him; so, he went in and sat at table. The Pharisee was astonished to see that he did not first wash before dinner. And the Lord said to him, ‘Now you Pharisees cleanse the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside you are full of extortion and wickedness. You fools! Did not he who made the outside make the inside also? But give for alms those things which are within; and behold, everything is clean for you. But woe to you Pharisees! For you tithe mint and rue and every herb, and neglect justice and the love of God; these you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. Woe to you Pharisees! For you love the best seat in the synagogues and salutations in the marketplaces. Woe to you! For you are like graves which are not seen, and men walk over them without knowing it." (Luke 11:37-44)


Version 1: “Then the Pharisees went and took counsel how to entangle him in his talk. And they sent their disciples to him, along with the Herodians, saying, ‘Teacher, we know that you are true, and teach the way of God truthfully, and care for no man; for you do not regard the position of men. Tell us, then, what you think. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?’ But Jesus, aware of their malice, said, ‘Why put me to the test, you hypocrites? Show me the money for the tax.’ And they brought him a coin. And Jesus said to them, ‘Whose likeness and inscription is this?’ They said, ‘Caesar's.’ Then he said to them, ‘Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's.’ When they heard it, they marveled; and they left him and went away.’ (Matt. 22:15-22)


Version 2: “So they watched him and sent spies who pretended to be honest, in order to trap him by what he said, so as to hand him over to the jurisdiction and authority of the governor. So, they asked him, ‘Teacher, we know that you are right in what you say and teach, and you show deference to no one, but teach the way of God in accordance with truth. Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to the emperor, or not?’ But he perceived their craftiness and said to them, “Show me a denarius. Whose head and whose title does it bear?” They said, “The emperor’s.” He said to them, ‘Then give to the emperor the things that are the emperor’s, and to God the things that are God’s.’ And they were not able in the presence of the people to trap him by what he said, and being amazed by his answer, they became silent. (Luke 20:20-26)


“When they came to Capernaum, the collectors of the half-shekel tax went up to Peter and said, ‘Does not your teacher pay the tax?’ He said, ‘Yes.’ And when he came home, Jesus spoke to him first, saying, ‘What do you think, Simon? From whom do kings of the earth take toll or tribute? From their sons or from others?’ And when he said, ‘From others,’ Jesus said to him, ‘Then the sons are free. However, not to give offense to them, go to the sea and cast a hook, and take the first fish that comes up, and when you open its mouth, you will find a shekel; take that and give it to them for me and for yourself.’” (Matt.17:24-27)



Version 1: “At that time Jesus went through the grain fields on the Sabbath; his disciples were hungry, and they began to pluck heads of grain and to eat. But when the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, ‘Look, your disciples are doing what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath.’ He said to them, ‘Have you not read what David did, when he was hungry, and those who were with him: how he entered the house of God and ate the bread of the Presence, which it was not lawful for him to eat nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests? Or have you not read in the law how on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath, and are guiltless? I tell you, something greater than the temple is here. And if you had known what this means, `I desire mercy, and not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned the guiltless. For the Son of man is lord of the Sabbath.’ And he went on from there, and entered their synagogue. And behold, there was a man with a withered hand. And they asked him, ‘Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?’ so that they might accuse him. He said to them, ‘What man of you, if he has one sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will not lay hold of it and lift it out? Of how much more value is a man than a sheep! So, it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.’ Then he said to the man, ‘Stretch out your hand.’ And the man stretched it out, and it was restored, whole like the other. But the Pharisees went out and took counsel against him, how to destroy him.” (Matt. 12:1-14)


Version 2: “Now it came to pass on a Sabbath, that he was going through the grain fields; and his disciples plucked the ears, and did eat, rubbing them in their hands. But certain of the Pharisees said, ‘Why do you that which it is not lawful to do on the Sabbath day?’ And Jesus answering them said, ‘Have ye not read even this, what David did, when he was hungry, he, and they that were with him; how he entered into the house of God, and took and ate the showbread, and gave also to them that were with him; which it is not lawful to eat save for the priests alone? And he said unto them, ‘The Son of man is lord of the Sabbath.’ And it came to pass on another Sabbath that he entered into the synagogue and taught and there was a man there, and his right hand was withered. And the scribes and the Pharisees watched him, whether he would heal on the Sabbath; that they might find how to accuse him. But he knew their thoughts; and he said to the man who had his hand withered, ‘Rise up, and stand forth in the midst. And he arose and stood forth.’ And Jesus said unto them, ‘I ask you, is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good, or to do harm? To save a life, or to destroy it?’ And he looked round about on them all, and said unto him, ‘Stretch forth thy hand’. And he did so: and his hand was restored. But they were filled with madness; and communed one with another what they might do to Jesus.” (Luke 6:1-11)


“And as he sat at table in the house, behold many tax collectors and sinners came and sat down with Jesus and his disciples. And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, ‘Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?’ But when he heard it, he said, ‘Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, `I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.' For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.’” (Matt. 9:10-13)

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