Matthew 4.23-25 – Jesus Heals
Speaking Notes – Caveat
These notes are my speaking notes and are provided as an accompaniment to the recording. Please accept that they are not intended to be a published grammatically correct essay. I do hope and pray however they help you move towards Jesus.
Now onto the content…
Why when it comes to healing do our arms cross over and our minds enter the same sceptical mode we might adopt when we are speaking to a cold call salesman. Well, we might discover why that is enroute this morning. But for now, can I ask you one thing. Would you walk through this with me this morning? Would you trust me enough to hear the whole of what I have to say as we together examine what Jesus might have to say about finding healing?
If Jesus is our God and our prime example of what it is to live in God’s kingdom on this earth then he modelled healing.
Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and illness among the people.
Some theologian with way to much time on their hands has estimated that 38.5% of the stories in the gospels about Jesus are about healing people.
There is Peter’s mother-in-law, The lepers, Jairus’ daughter, The Woman with issue of blood, Many Deaf, dumb and blind people, The widow’s dead son and Lazarus, also dead to name just a few
Yes Jesus healed. And so as we see God’s kingdom beginning to come through His Holy Spirit on this earth today we can expect healing to be part of that.
And Jesus healed in many ways.
Jesus healed physically all the time, even when he was a tad busy. Remember when he was arrested before the crucifixion?
And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear. But Jesus answered, “No more of this!” And he touched the man’s ear and healed him. Luke 22:50-51
Many many of his healings were physical as we have already said.
Jesus was also interested in emotional healing. We see his concern all over the gospels.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27
That sounds like emotional healing to me.
And then there was spiritual healing. Just as one example we read in Matthew, Mark and Luke the synoptic Gospels of the demoniac. The man with many spiritual issues. Jesus heals him.
So if Jesus healed and he was God’s kingdom beginning to come in this world then as God’s kingdom continues to come we can expect these healings to continue. And as people who are striving to be his apprentices, we would expect to be part of that.
But let us be real. That scepticism I spoke of earlier comes because we don’t always see this healing, do we? If God’s kingdom is coming and healing is part of that then why do we not see everyone healed.
And indeed it is not a new issue. Paul. The great Paul himself spoke of a ‘thorn in the flesh.’
Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ 2 Corinthians 12:8-9a
And we even read in this Bible that Jesus himself didn’t heal everyone.
God Kingdom Now And Not Yet
Why does God not heal always? I have heard some well-meaning but Christians say things like well we will all be healed in heaven. And that is of course true. But somehow it does seem to be a decent answer, does it? It still means that we or the one we loved wasn’t healed.
And I believe in the Holy Spirit’s healing power. I have seen it. Just one example. I remember being on a youth camp and praying for a young woman with a friend. That young woman had scars all up her arms. Physical signs of the abuse she had put herself through, because of the emotional neglect she had suffered. She came to the two of us to receive prayer for emotional healing. And so we prayed.
The next day we sat with her again over coffee and chatted and as she spoke with a new fresh excitement in her voice I glanced down at her arm and the scars she bore. Only there were no scars. She had been emotionally and physically healed by God’s Holy Spirit.
So I believe God heals.
But like Paul and like you I have had times when healing has not come. Nearly three years ago my own father died after we had been praying he would be healed.
Well, perhaps those Christians who say we will all be healed eventually might have something after all. It might not truly satisfy but perhaps as there is the start of a route to truth in it.
The word we translate for healing in the Bible and particularly in the Gospels is often the Greek word Sozo (sode’-zo). So when the woman who touched Jesus’ cloak in Matthew and Marks Gospel and is healed he says to her.
He said to her, ‘Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.’ Mark 5:34
That word well is the greek word sozo. God’s kingdom has come in the now, and she is healed.
And then there is the example of Jesus speaking to Zacchaeus, and he says
For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.’ Luke 19:10
That word save is the greek word Sozo (sode’-zo). Is it possible that once again Jesus is being holistic? Is it possible that our resurrection to be with God really is part of God’s Kingdom in the not yet.
Well, I want to say yes our resurrection is an intrinsic part of God’s holistic approach to our healing. Our physical, and our emotional and our spiritual healing.
The Big Idea
For me I want to suggest that the big idea is that finding Healing really is about God’s Kingdom in the Now And Not Yet. And that to be a disciple and apprentice and mature follower of Jesus is accepting that Healing is in the now and the not yet. That we partner with God’s Holy Spirit in bringing his Kingdom and healing to the now part of that.
A mature apprentice to Christ will understand that we do not fathom all of God’s plans or desires. That his Kingdom is in the now and not yet. And A mature apprentice to Christ will see that as we partner with him, our part is to continue to ask for healing.
So we pray in a faithful Environment with God’s Holy Spirit, seeking Revelation, and we pray Specifically, Continuing until we can pray no more.
If Jesus promised us the Holy Spirit as he did to bring us his power. Then as mature apprentices and followers of Christ. We want to seek to see his Kingdom all the more in the now, as well as see it in the no yet. And so we go and we pray in great expectation that His Spirit will bring healing.
The rest we leave up to him.