April 1 I Friday
“This was to fulfil what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah: ‘He took up our infirmities and bore our diseases.’” —Matthew 8:17
When we observe how Jesus performed His miracles in Matthew 8 and 9, we find an interesting trend. One of Jesus’s miracles was with a leper who said to Him, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean” (Matthew 8:2). Jesus reached out His hand, touched the man and said, “I am willing. Be clean!” (Matthew 8:3). Immediately, the man was cleansed of his leprosy.
On another occasion, a centurion came to Jesus because of his paralyzed servant at home and said, “Lord, I do not deserve to have You come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed” (Matthew 8:8). Jesus did not see or touch the centurion’s servant but responded, “Go! Let it be done just as you believed it would” (Matthew 8:13); at that very moment, the centurion’s servant was healed. Similarly, Jesus performed a miracle on a paralytic that was brought to Him. Jesus did not touch the paralytic but simply said, “Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven….Get up, take your mat and go home” (Matthew 9:2, 6). Just like that, the paralytic was healed. There was also a case with a woman in the crowd, who had been bleeding for 12 years; she came up behind Jesus, reached out her hand and touched His garment. Like others before her, this woman’s hemorrhage immediately stopped, but different with this occasion, Jesus neither spoke nor touched her in order for the healing to occur—she simply touched Him.
If we try to come up with a methodology on how Jesus performs miracles by observing the way that He healed the leper, the centurion’s servant, the paralytic and the woman with the bleeding issue, we will notice that the way Jesus performed His miracles was different in every case. If we tried to imitate what Jesus did, we fall into what Oswald Smith once said: “God raises up a man. The man has a message. The message becomes a movement. And the movement turns into a monument.” Monuments do not go anywhere, but God is always on the move in fresh, new ways.
Instead of trying to find a pattern on what Jesus was doing in His miracles, we should look at the principle that lies behind the pattern, because patterns will inevitably differ while the principle remains the same. The challenging yet exciting principle behind these miracles is that we cannot be fruitful in our Christian life on automatic mode. We can only be fruitful in the Christian life when our relationship with Jesus Christ is alive and daily, where we are dependent on Him to direct and guide us.
Prayer: Dear Jesus, bring me into a living relationship with You and allow me to experience You in a fresh, new way. Thank You, Lord.