Many people are hurting in many ways. Some are hurting financially, physically, mentally, emotionally, or even spiritually. So, how does one move from hurting to healing. Matthew chapter 8, verses 1-4 shows us how:
1 When Jesus came down from the mountainside, large crowds followed him. 2 A man with leprosy came and knelt before him and said, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” 3 Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!” Immediately he was cleansed of his leprosy. 4 Then Jesus said to him, “See that you don’t tell anyone. But go, show yourself to the priest and offer the gift Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.”
Chapter 8 opens on the heels of Jesus’ extremely radical and famous Sermon on the Mount in Chapters 5-7. There He taught these first century Jews not to live and love like the Gentiles do. He gave them a kingdom agenda. Because of His radical teaching, great multitudes followed Him not because of who He was but to see what He could do.
Verse 2 opens with the account of a man with leprosy, it would be like COVID-19. Leprosy in ancient Israel was a most dreaded disease. It could range from a simple fungal infection to a fatal disease. Leviticus chapters 13 and 14 prescribed that lepers practice social distancing and be quarantined from the rest of society. They were not allowed to approach within six feet of anyone. Thus, these wretched untouchables were socially and spiritually separated from society.
But notice how Jesus treated this outcast. He does not say “Whoa, now wait a minute … why the kneeling? Or why are you calling me Lord? Or leprosy … that is a tough one. I’m not a leprosy specialist.” No, instead, Jesus does something unusual and remarkable. 3 Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man.
Touching a leper was forbidden. People in the first century did not touch lepers. Most people would have been revolted by the thought of it. But the heart of Jesus was deeply touched by the leper. The sight just gripped His heart. In addition to touching the man, Jesus stated “I am willing…” This phrase carries the idea of Jesus having the ability, desire, and preference to heal the man. So, Jesus pronounces the man to be clean. Jesus cleansed the leper through and through, physically, socially, and spiritually.
So, now that the man has shown faith in Jesus, Jesus now wants the man’s obedience. Although miracles will attest the authenticity of Jesus’ Gospel message about the arrival of the kingdom of heaven, Jesus does not want crowds clamoring for the miracles alone. They may easily misunderstand His message to mean that He has come to effect only physical healing or material blessings. But if the man is obedient and presents himself to the priest, the priest will declare him clean. Thus, the man could return to society and this would legitimize Jesus’ purpose for coming, which was to restore us into a right relationship with God first and then with His people.
So, if you are hurting, it is time to make something happen, it is time to move from hurting to healing, both physically and spiritually. There is only one person who is both willing and able to move you from hurting to healing. It is Jesus. So, make the decision today, and accept Jesus’ offering to move from hurting to healing.
To learn more about Moving From Hurting to Healing, download our FMBC app, by texting Concordfmbc app to 77977 and Like us at Facebook https://www.facebook.com/FMBC.CONCORD/ or follow me on Twitter: @HerbRhedrick