Summary: Maybe the most unusual healing in the N.T., Jesus removes many pounds/ gallons of fluid from a man's body in a few seconds. The Greek indicates He may have squeezed the man as part of the healing. Wow!
HEALING OF THE DROPSY MAN
A. HUMOR: COLLATERAL
1. An Amish man wanted a loan for $500. He approached his local banker. The banker looked at the head teller & winked!
2. "What have you got for collateral?" queried the banker. "What is collateral?" "Something of value that would guarantee the loan.”
3. “Do you have you any vehicles?" "Yes, I have a 1949 Chevy pickup." "How about livestock?" "Yes, I have an old horse." Finally the banker decided to make the $500 loan.
4. Several weeks later the Amish man was back in the bank. He pulled out a roll of bills, "Here's the money to pay the loan," he said, handing the entire amount including interest.
5. "What are you going to do with the rest of that money?"
"Keep it in my pocket." "Why don't you deposit it in my bank?" he asked. “What does ‘deposit’ mean?" said the Amish.
6. "Well, you put the money in our bank and we take care of it for you. When you want to use it you can withdraw it."
7. The Amish man looked at the head teller and winked, and said, "What do you have for collateral?"
14 One Sabbath, when Jesus went to eat in the house of a prominent Pharisee, he was being carefully watched. 2 There in front of him was a man suffering from abnormal swelling of his body [KJV – dropsy]. 3 Jesus asked the Pharisees and experts in the law, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath or not?” 4 But they remained silent. So taking hold of the man, he healed him and sent him on his way. 5 Then he asked them, “If one of you has a child[some mss, “donkey”] or an ox that falls into a well on the Sabbath day, will you not immediately pull it out?” 6 And they had nothing to say.
1. The healing of this man is mentioned only here and is almost universally overlooked by expositors because on the surface it doesn’t seem to have anything noteworthy about it.
2. But a careful examination shows it to be one of the most interesting events and unusual healings in the Bible.
3. So let’s take a look at the “Healing of the Dropsy Man.”
I. SITUATION AT THE PHARISEES HOUSE
A. THE MAN’S ILLNESS
1. DROPSY: An old term for the swelling of soft tissues due to the accumulation of excess water. The causes of the swelling could be:
a. EDEMA is often more prominent in the lower legs and feet toward the end of the day as a result of pooling of fluid from the upright position. (Some of us have swelled middles!)
b. CONGESTIVE HEART FAILURE – when the heart is laboring under strain, the body surrounds it with a sack of fluid.
c. KIDNEY, LIVER, or other organ FAILURE – when the internal organs can’t process the bodily fluids, they back up and cause swelling.
2. So whatever this man had, it wasn’t something new; he’d had it for a while. He was a seriously ill man. He was a man who was very swollen and obviously sick.
B. THE PLOT
1. Several things about this incident point to the fact that this was a plot to entrap Jesus. It was…
a. AT A PHARISEE’S HOUSE JESUS WAS INVITED.
b. IT WAS A SABBATH.
c. A VERY ILL MAN WAS PLACED IN FRONT OF JESUS.
1). He was not there by accident; this was not a public place. The proximity of the man to Jesus at this meal indicates that he was deliberately placed opposite or near Jesus at the table.
2). The illness was so serious that Jesus couldn’t have failed to notice it. It was obviously a set up. Either Jesus was going to have to wrongfully ignore the man or He was going to have to “break the Sabbath” by healing him.
d. JESUS WAS BEING CAREFULLY WATCHED.
2. These 4 facts prove that there was a plot afoot here to entrap Jesus into committing an infraction against the Jewish laws so that they could accuse Him. Jesus fearlessly took the bait.
II. JESUS DEFENDS SABBATH HEALING/ACTIONS
A. INSTANCES OF SABBATH VIOLATION
1. Disciples PICKING GRAIN on the Sabbath, Mt. 12:1-8; Mk. 2:23-28; Lk. 6:1-5.
2. MAN with SHRIVELED HAND healed, Mt. 12:9-14; Mk. 3:1-4; Lk. 6:6-11.
3. BOWED WOMAN HEALED, Lk. 13:10-17.
4. MAN with DROPSY HEALED, Lk. 14:1-6.
B. JESUS’ TWO LINES OF DEFENSE
1. THE NATURE OF THE SABBATH
a. Matthew 12:5, “Or haven’t you read in the Law that the priests on Sabbath duty in the temple desecrate the Sabbath and yet are innocent?”
b. Mark 2:27, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.”