DELIVERANCE AND HEALING
By PBS Ministries
Today’s Scripture is taken from Matthew 9:10-13
While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and sinners came and ate with him and his disciples. 11 When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” 12 On hearing this, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”
Throughout Jesus’ life on earth, He welcomed, mingled and ate with sinners. He thought them many parables and healed their sickness and disease. He was often criticized by the Pharisees and teachers of the law for being among out-cast and sinners, but Jesus explained to them that His purpose is to bring sinners to repentance.
Jesus showed humility throughout His ministry. He was deeply concerned for the lost, the downtrodden, the meek the poor and the needy. And for Him to accomplish His Father’s will, He had to show compassion to all. In the synagogue, He read from the scroll of prophet Isaiah: “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoner and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Many were amazed at Jesus’ teaching because He spoke with authority. After Jesus taught and healed many, large crowds began to follow Him. But He told them, if they are to be His disciples, they must deny themselves, take up their cross and follow Him. Jesus knows the intent of our heart and if we are truly desirous of following Him. One disciple that wanted to follow Jesus said, Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” But Jesus told him, “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead.” In Luke 14, Jesus said to the large crowds that were traveling with Him, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple. And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.”
During Jesus’ ministry, He reached out to thieves, publicans and prostitutes. He showed love and compassion for them and forgave their sins. As Jesus performed many miracles, many believed in Him and decided to follow Him.
Apostle Paul said in 1 Corinthians 9:20-23 that he made himself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. “To the Jews, I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. 21 To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law. To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.”
Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and Apostle Paul have left examples for us to follow. If we are to win the lost, we have to go into the unsaved world to reach them. Though some may attend church services and give their life to Christ after an alter call, which is also very good, Jesus commands us through the Great Commission to go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything He has commanded us.
As we purpose in our heart to follow Christ, let us go among the sinners to find the lost sheep, let us plant the seed so that the Lord can bring the increase and let us bring home the prodigal son. For there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent. Glory to God. Amen.