Saturday, June 2, 2018

Jesus as Healer

“I feel funny regarding Jesus merely as an example, but I don’t know what else to do.” Many of us have had similar thoughts while reading the Gospels.

How are we to read the Gospels? First, we read them to learn about Jesus our Savior. When we hear Him teaching the Word of God (Luke 5:1), we thank Him for bringing the Good News of salvation. When we see Him performing miracles, such as the miraculous catch of fish (vv. 4–11), we worship Him for His great miracle of dying for our sins and rising again.

Secondly, we read the Gospels to learn about God. Since Jesus is the great Prophet, in His words and works He reveals God. When we see Jesus humbling himself to eat with tax collectors and sinners (vv. 29–32), we learn of God’s grace and long-suffering. When we hear Jesus’ words about the new wine of the kingdom of God (vv. 36–39), we learn of God’s wisdom and power in bringing salvation into the world.

Thirdly, we read the Gospels so we may better follow our Lord’s example. We, like the disciples, must be willing to leave all to follow Him (v. 11). And we too need to withdraw to private places to pray (v. 16).

Now let’s apply these principles of how to read the Gospels to the concept of Jesus as a healer, especially in Luke 5. Our Lord’s healing of the paralytic (vv. 17–26) shows He is the Savior. He performed a visible miracle (enabling the paralytic to walk) to demonstrate that He could perform the invisible miracle of forgiving the man’s sins. Jesus the healer is most importantly the healer of souls. We must join the awe-struck crowd in praising God (v. 26). In fact, we have even more reason for praise than they did, for the Savior has died and risen again!

Jesus’ preaching to and healing many (v. 15) demonstrate God’s great heart for the lost and hurting. It also shows His power (see v. 17) in providing spiritual and physical remedies.

Finally, Jesus’ healing ministry is an example to us. Although we cannot heal as the Son of God, we can be “willing” (v. 13) to reach out to the “unclean” around us. And we can yield ourselves to the great healer of souls (vv. 31–32) and fisher of men so we can be used by Him to catch people (v. 10).