John 7: 21-24.
Jesus answered and said unto them, I have done one work, and ye all marvel.
Moses therefore gave unto you circumcision; (not because it is of Moses, but of the fathers;) and ye on the Sabbath day circumcise a man.
If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are ye angry at Me, because I have made a man every whit whole on the sabbath day?
Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.
The Jewish leaders had just accused Jesus of having a demon, and asked Him who He thought was seeking to kill Him. He knew they were false, and He spoke accordingly.
His response cut through all the verbiage, and made them face their own hypocrisy.
“I have done one work. . .” Jesus referred to the man He had healed, made whole and complete, on the sabbath day, and what a stir it created in Jerusalem.
“Moses therefore gave unto you circumcision”: Circumcision was to be done on the eighth day after the birth of a son, to fulfill the Law of Moses and the forefathers, given by God. This was the case even if the procedure had to be done on the Sabbath, when no work was allowed.
“If a man on the Sabbath day receive circumcision,” If you are allowed to perform a painful procedure on the Sabbath, to fulfill the Law, then why are you so angry at Me for making a man whole and complete on the Sabbath?
“Judge not according to the appearance. . .” There could probably be several sermons delivered on this verse alone. The leaders felt that Jesus appeared to be a sinner; therefore, they appeared to be righteous. They were wrong on both counts. There cannot be a righteous judgment based only on appearance, partly because appearance can change from each person’s perspective. That is why, in a court of law, there must be more than one witness who agree on what they observed. The decision must be made based on righteous, unbiased judgment; not on appearances only.
Jesus told the Jewish leaders to put aside their prejudice (an interesting word that means to judge in advance; in other words, to make up one’s mind before all the facts are considered, to pre-judge) and to judge only on the basis of righteousness.
Jesus’ healing of the man had been done in righteousness. There was no sin, no breaking of the Law.