Summary: Message bringing out what we can learn from various episodes of Jesus’ healings.
Jesus the Healer
Various passages from Matthew 8-9
October 2, 2005
Today’s message is going to be a bit of a departure from my normal pattern as we go through the book of Matthew.
Normally, we look through a passage, and glean the lessons we can learn and apply to our life.
But today, I’m going to reference a few passages from chapters 8-9, all of which demonstrate some facets of Jesus’ ability to heal people.
And don’t worry, we’ll be going back in the future to cover the other events in these two chapters, but wanted to show what we could learn from this collection of events that are sort of grouped together in these two chapters.
We’re not going to read each episode in its entirety, simply for the sake of time, but you will have the references in your note-taking guide so you can look these up over the week and contemplate these things of Jesus.
At the end of the Sermon on the Mount, we find that the people were amazed at the way Jesus taught, because he taught as one who had authority. This authority was sorely lacking among the teachers of the law.
But it wasn’t Jesus’ teaching that had authority. Jesus would soon demonstrate his authority over some other things as well, and that’s what we’re going to explore today.
Jesus is shown in Matthew 8 & 9 healing a number of people. This was nothing new, because he had been healing people before, and had made a habit of doing this even before the Sermon on the Mount, but I think there’s something to be learned in these particular episodes in Jesus’ life, and that is that Jesus had authority from God and that he could and would exercise it.
He would exercise it for the benefit of people and the glory of the Father.
In these events, Jesus exercises authority in three areas that we’re going to look at. And it’s my hope that as we go through these, that not only will you gain a greater sense of how powerful Jesus is, but that your own faith in Jesus will be strengthened, no matter if you’ve walked with Jesus for years or you’re just beginning to know him for yourself.
Well, let’s dive in and look at three areas in which Jesus exercised his authority.
The first is that...
Jesus exercised his authority over illness.
Two main types of illnesses in Scripture: physical and demonic. Let’s start by looking quickly at the physical illnesses addressed in our passages today.
* Peter’s mother-in-law (8:14-15).
She had a fever. Bad enough to keep her in bed. And there is nothing to indicate what caused the fever.
But Jesus walked up to her, touched her hand, and she was able to get up and serve Jesus and his gang.
Now I want you to notice something here: Jesus did not heal her of being a mother-in-law! Scripture doesn’t give us any hint of why that was, either, but anyway...
He also healed a...
* Paralytic (9:1-8).
In this section of Matthew, we find a great story about a guy who had four friends who cared about him so much they carried him to Jesus.
Well, Jesus looks at this guy, has pity on him, and heals him. Then the guy gets up and walks home.
Let’s take a look at a third example of healing a physical illness, as we look at a...
* Bleeding woman (9:20-22).
Now talk about your chronic illnesses. This poor woman had been bleeding for 12 long years. The Scripture doesn’t tell us what was the cause, but obviously it was a major cause of concern, and she now sought out the one she had heard about who could heal the sick.
So reaches out in faith, and she is healed through the power of Jesus. She is cured. And I can only imagine how she must have felt as over the next days and weeks the truth that she was permanently healed dawned on her. Amazing, huh?
* Two blind men (9:27-31)
Jesus asks them if they really believe he can heal them, they answer that they do, and Jesus touches their eyes, healing them.
And then they go and talk about it all over the place, in spite of Jesus’ instructions to keep quiet about it.
Jesus healed all sorts of physical illnesses, but he also healed demonic illnesses.
In the Scriptures, it is very clear that people could be possessed by evil spirits, and sometimes those spirits caused physical maladies like epilepsy, muteness, or any number of other problems that manifested physically.
Other times, these demons gave the impression of mental illness, as we’ll see in one of the examples in our passage.
But in any case, demon possession was real, and it was a very distressing situation. And in case you weren’t aware of it, it’s still real in our day and age, and just as distressing.