by Maria Rudolph
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A man with leprosy came and knelt before him and said, ‘Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.’ Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. ‘I am willing,’ he said (Matthew 8:2,3).
We know that Jesus can heal with a simple word or touch of his hand. On one recorded occasion, it was even enough for a woman to touch the edge of Jesus’ cloak, and she was healed from a long-term condition (Matthew 9:20–22). The healing powers of Jesus were so awesome that large crowds flocked to him, and the sick and possessed came forward or were brought to him by others because people had faith in the healing powers of Jesus.
What about today? Do you hold that the age of physical healing is over and God doesn’t work in that way anymore? Is the failure to witness physical healing in your loved ones a reason you may be angry or cynical towards God? After all, Jesus is the great healer of many in the gospels. A word or a touch would be enough to make it happen. And yet, sickness and death are still all around us.
Sickness and death were indeed all around Jesus as well. Do you think that from a large crowd of over 5000 people who were fed, only a handful had physical ailments? In an age without medicine and much diagnostic knowledge like we have today, most people would have suffered some kind of condition, and life expectancy would have been low compared to Australia in 2021. There was sickness and dying all around Jesus, and while he is recorded to have healed many, he certainly didn’t heal each ailment nor resurrected every dead person, although he certainly could have.
It is beyond us to know why some people are healed and some are not, why some people even today receive the gift of healing in the name of Jesus. Consider the words of Jesus in John 3:3, ‘This happened so that the work of God might be displayed’. We will never know why physical restoration and healing happens in one instance and not another, but we can be sure that we are completely healed spiritually when we put our trust in God. But just like the people who experienced Jesus’ healing power, let us never give up hope that physical healing is still a possibility at any point. Are you willing to trust Jesus beyond human reason?
Our great Physician, you heal and restore people deeply and completely. Your Holy Spirit has made me new and continues to restore my soul again and again. Help me to trust in your physical healing powers too and never give up hope in the endless acts of mercy you are able to outpour on us. Help us to trust and follow you whether we receive obvious answers to our prayers or not. Reassure us that you hear us and are working for the good of those who love you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.