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I recently heard about a doctor who seemed to have had a huge amount of success as a GP. Whilst he only had a small number of patients on his books, they all stayed in remarkable health. A journalist heard about this doctor, and decided to pay him a visit.

Now this journalist, a man by the name of McKenna, suffered a rare blood disorder. This illness didn’t usually present a problem, and McKenna was able to live his life quite normally. However, if he didn’t watch his diet closely, he could end up in a coma for days, or worse. The illness could quite easily end his life. A cure was needed, and McKenna hoped that this doctor could help.

He went to the doctor’s surgery, and asked for an appointment. The nurse asked him to fill out a form. As well as the usual questions, there was one that seemed a bit strange. The form asked whether or not he had any potentially fatal diseases. Of course, McKenna answered that he did. He finished filling it in, and handed it back to the nurse. The nurse looked at the form, and then informed McKenna that the doctor’s appointment book was full that day. And tomorrow, and the next day... The doctor couldn’t see McKenna, now or ever.

How odd. McKenna’s journalistic instincts made him a bit suspicious, however, so he arranged for a friend to make an appointment. This friend was in perfect health, and he said so on the form. And the doctor was able to see him that afternoon.

The doctor’s secret was out. He had a good record because he would only see healthy people.


When Jesus lived on earth, he seemed to attract all the people who seemed the least desirable in ’proper’ society. He was friendly with prostitutes, alcoholics, and even tax collectors! The religious people of the time disapproved of this. If Jesus was supposed to be a great religious teacher, why did he insist on associating with such irreligious people?

Jesus’ answer was this – ’It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick ... I came to call not the upright, but the sinners.’ (Matthew 9:12-13, New Jerusalem Bible)

Of course, even apparently healthy people need to see a doctor every once in a while to make sure they’re as healthy as they seem. Even the most religious of us aren’t as upright as we would sometimes like to think.

Regardless of our position in society, we all need to go and meet with Jesus to discuss the health of our souls.


Cameron Horsburgh (Captain)

The Salvation Army Community Church

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