Summary: Jesus takes quality time to minister privately and personally to those of great need.
EARS OPENED, MOUTH ENGAGED PROPERLY
31 ¶ And again, departing from the coasts of Tyre and Sidon, he came unto the sea of Galilee, through the midst of the coasts of Decapolis.
32 And they bring unto him one that was deaf, and had an impediment in his speech; and they beseech him to put his hand upon him.
33 And he took him aside from the multitude, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spit, and touched his tongue;
34 And looking up to heaven, he sighed, and saith unto him, Ephphatha, that is, Be opened.
35 And straightway his ears were opened, and the string of his tongue was loosed, and he spake plain.
36 And he charged them that they should tell no man: but the more he charged them, so much the more a great deal they published it;
37 And were beyond measure astonished, saying, He hath done all things well: he maketh both the deaf to hear, and the dumb to speak.
I. Giving another Opportunity to the people of Decapolis
The demoniac of Gadera was set free by Jesus near this place. The citizens at that time had asked Him to depart from their coasts. The liberated man had ministered in Decapolis and now Christ is passing their way again.
It appears that the witness brought about some positive results. They (those of Decapolis) (vs. 32) bring a man in need to Jesus, trusting that He will help him.
It is so good to know that even though we have messed up and mistreated the Lord, He will come back around and give us another chance.
II. No hearing and garbled speech
This man could not hear anything and when he tried to talk, no one could understand his speech.
It is a picture of deprived human nature. One who does not have a relationship with God, does not hear the instructions and warnings that the Lord would share with them.
1a. Co. 2:14 - But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
Then, when a sinner tries to talk to God, he lacks the wherewith to express himself correctly. The Bible tells us that the only prayer that God hears from a sinner is the prayer of repentance. Many try to converse in other manners and it is all in vain.
III. Tactfulness and Sign Language
The Lord did not wish for the man to feel like a spectacle, so he takes Him aside to minister to him privately and personally. In doing so, He shows that whatever He was doing beforehand could be put on hold, for He was focusing on this important and urgent need. God will gladly make your case a high priority.
Jesus communicates to him on a level where he can comprehend. He sticks His fingers in his ears to indicate that they are going to pray for his hearing.
Then He spits on his finger and touches the mans' tongue to let him know that God wants to help him speak with understanding.
The spittle is a by-product of the mouth; in this case, the mouth of the Lord, from whence comes forth the Word of God.
IV. The Sigh of the Lord
As Jesus looks up to heaven, He lets out a sigh. It probably was due to sadness and frustration. A similiar scene took place in John 11.
When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled,
Jesus therefore again groaning in himself cometh to the grave. It was a cave, and a stone lay upon it.
The sigh or groan from Jesus was a way of saying--It was never meant to be this way.
Here is seen the fulfillment of Isaiah 35:3-6
3 Strengthen ye the weak hands, and confirm the feeble knees.
4 Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompence; he will come and save you.
5 ¶ Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.
6 Then shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert.
Now, the Holy Spirit continues ministering to us in the same fashion
Romans 8:26 - Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.