Summary: Jesus had an incredible ministry when he was in Capernaum. People were radically changed and brought their friends to Him.
The next few weeks we will be examining the different types of ministries during Jesus life. Here is a list of those ministries: A Powerful Ministry, A Redeeming Ministry, A Remarkable Ministry, A Breath-taking Ministry and of course, A Rewarding Ministry.
Introduction - Man Raised with Chickens
Social workers in Fiji are trying to rehabilitate a 32-year-old man they say was raised by chickens, according to NBC in 2004. As a young child, the man was locked in a chicken coop for several years by his grandfather after his parents died. He had little contact with humans and picked up the habits of the birds.
After escaping from the coop, the man was taken to a local hospital. No one knew how to treat him, so hospital workers locked him in a room and tied him to his bed for more than 20 years.
Now, doctors are trying to treat the man. They say he has no mental defects and agree his condition is from years of abuse and neglect.
"He had imitated or imprinted with the chicken," said Elizabeth Clayton who is rehabilitating the man. "He was perching, he was picking at his food, he was hopping around like a chicken. He'd keep his hands in a chicken-like fashion, and he'd make a noise which was like the calling of a chicken -- which he still has."
Doctors said the man has made remarkable progress and is now learning to walk and speak like a human.
How we are reared often determines how we respond. This was an extreme case of neglect and abuse. It is sad to say that the chickens had more of an impression on this young man than did his parents or grandparents.
Jesus constantly ministered to people. They were the reason He came. Notice the first place He started.
A MINISTRY IN THE HOME (29-31)
After a hair-raising experience on the Sabbath in the synagogue, Jesus goes home with Simon Peter and Andrew. Peter’s mother-in-law was ill that day. Let’s examine the events as they unfold.
First we notice the PRACTICE of Jesus.
He had been at the synagogue with His disciples. They had witnessed a life changing event with the demon cast out of their presence and out of the man’s life. Jesus still changes lives.
The PRESENCE of Jesus
The next thing we notice is the presence of Jesus. He is there in everyday life. It matters not whether it’s in the synagogue or the home. It doesn’t matter if it’s good or bad. He is always there.
The POWER of Jesus
We also see His power. He affects those around Him! He heals those who are ill. No one is beyond His touch.
The PROMISE of Jesus
Jesus will NEVER leave or forsake you. He is always there. He is faithful and true to His word.
That reminds me of the father who was trying to explain the concept of marriage to his 4-year-old daughter. He got out their wedding album, thinking visual images would help, and explained the entire wedding service to her. When he was finished, he asked if she had any questions. She pointed to a picture of the wedding party and asked, “Daddy, is that when mommy came to work for us?
We find that ministry is not meals, meetings or motion. The most active chicken in the barnyard is the one whose head has been chopped off! Ministry is reaching and risking. It becomes personal. It is taking Jesus to people. It is becoming involved in a society that doesn't want you to become involved. It's helping the homeless, hearing the heartbroken and healing the hopeless. A heart truly touched by Jesus will have a desire to serve Him!
Notice what happens next. It begins to get dark outside but the light of Jesus shines. The community comes to Jesus for Him to heal the sick and cure the demon possessed. He could have turned them away but he didn’t. There was…
A MINISTRY OF THE HEART (32-34)
There were Overflowing numbers coming to His door.
We see that the scripture indicates that the whole town was there. Good news travels fast…especially if there is something we can get. The word had gotten out about the synagogue services and people were begging for more. It was overwhelming.
There were also Overwhelming conditions.
Jesus is to be loved regardless our condition. There were many who were ill. They were carried or brought to Jesus because they were hopeless cases. No one else was able to help them. But Jesus could and did.
Finally, we see that He is an Overcoming Savior.
We find that Jesus touched and toiled among a terminal generation. Nothing is different today. We live in a terminal generation.
I talked recently with a church member whose husband is dying with cancer. We discussed how different it is when we know that death will take us and that we know we will die shortly. It is a matter of perspective.