Matthew 12:25-28

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Matthew 12:25-28

25 Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand. 26 If Satan drives out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then can his kingdom stand? 27 And if I drive out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your people drive them out? So then, they will be your judges. 28 But if it is by the Spirit of God that I drive out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.

 

Jesus had an effective healing ministry, even if the religious authorities of his day did not appreciate his work. They didn’t like that Jesus would heal on a Sabbath, insisting that healing someone was “work”, and thus Jesus was violating the Sabbath law of rest. Jesus had the power to perform miracles of healing. He healed those who were blind or crippled, afflicted with leprosy, even several persons who had died. He invited them to rise, to walk, to see, and by their faith, so they were healed.

Jesus had great compassion on those he healed. There was a time when Jesus longed for some quiet time away, but a large crowd of people followed Jesus and his disciples to the wilderness place. First he healed those who were sick then he fed them. (See Matthew 14:13-21)

In our passage for today, Jesus is accused of being in cahoots with Satan, as if that was how people were being healed. Nothing could be further from the truth. Jesus reminded them that if he cast out demons by the name of Satan, he was “dividing the house.” No one wants to be sick or the victim of a natural disaster. We want to be whole and healthy, able to be active in our regular activities.

There was an episode from Jesus’ ministry when some friends lowered a paralyzed man through the roof for Jesus to heal. Jesus told this man his sins were forgiven. Some onlookers in the room were skeptical. They thought he was blaspheming, because only God can forgive sins! To prove that this man’s sins were indeed forgiven, Jesus commanded the paralyzed man to rise, take up his mat and go home. (Mark 2:1-12)

Healing was important to Jesus because he knew healing was a physical means of showing we are forgiven. His ultimate gift of forgiveness and healing was accomplished on the cross. By his resurrection, we are promised eternal life by faith in him. This is our final victory over death. By all Christ did, and certainly his healings, Jesus demonstrated that God was present in human form. God made us in God’s image and wants us to be whole.

 

Prayer

Dear God, I lift up someone who is going through a medical treatment or procedure, someone who is dealing with cancer or heart disease or any number of medical issues. I pray for one who is infirm in body or soul, or weighed down by age or disabilities. I pray for our healing and wholeness, in this world and the next, by the grace of our savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

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