References in periodicals archive ?
In 12:9-14, Jesus looses the prohibition against performing work on the sabbath with regard to works of healing and then declares, "It is lawful to do good on the sabbath." The latter pronouncement would potentially allow sabbath prohibitions to be loosed in a great many other instances as well (whenever the otherwise prohibited activity can be construed as "doing good").
Emerging from this survey of Matthean texts are the potentially contradictory notions that (a) the scriptures must be properly bound and loosed if God's will is to be discerned and obeyed, but that (b) the scriptures are often bound when they should be loosed, and loosed when they should be bound, with the result that God's will is not discerned or obeyed.
Further, although the instances in which he looses the law are relatively few, his justifications for doing so (e.g., "it is lawful to do good on the sabbath"; "what goes into the mouth does not defile a person") set sweeping precedents with potentially radical implications for ways in which laws could be loosed in many other instances (as they obviously were in the developing Christian church).