Scripture is at the end.
Imagine living 2000 years ago in the Middle East in the land of Judea; specifically in a region called Galilee. There are no hospitals, no pharmacies, no vaccinations, no antibiotics and very little medical care of any kind. Injuries and illnesses that today are no big deal were life changing or deadly back then.
Our neighborhoods and families would likely have individuals who were crippled or sick with conditions that greatly affected their daily lives and the lives of those around them. Chances are that some of us would be among those with such conditions, with no hope of them ever improving.
Into this mix comes word of a Nazarene carpenter named Jesus who is doing unbelievable things. He’s going around doing miracles! Cripples are being made whole, deaf are now able to hear, the blind are receiving their sight, the sick are no longer sick, lepers are being healed, demon-possessed are set free and there are even cases where the dead are brought back to life! On top of that – we have seen individuals whom we know personally who experienced miraculous healing and restorations through this Jesus!.
Yes he is teaching about God, but teachers have always been a part of Jewish life. Although people say he is teaching like no one they’ve ever heard. No one has ever done what he is doing – and it’s not just isolated cases here or there. He is healing everyone who comes to him!!!! Multitudes are flocking to him.
Can we imagine the excitement? Do we think that we’d be sitting around, discussing whether we were going to go see this Jesus – or not? Rather, doesn’t it seem likely that we would be beyond excited; doing everything we could to gather all our sick and crippled family and friends – helping them to get to him?
Jesus was so much more that a ‘great teacher’ – there has never been anyone like him. Here is Matthew’s description of the above scenario that we have been imagining together (4:23-24):
23 Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people. 24 News about him spread all over Syria, and people brought to him all who were ill with various diseases, those suffering severe pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures, and the paralyzed, and he healed them.
He was AND IS the Christ – the Son of the living God! He is our Savior and Lord!