All those who had any who were sick with various diseases brought them to Him; and laying His hands on each one of them, He was healing them.
Jesus’s ministry was marked by a genuine compassion for others. Luke 4:38 tells us, “Then He got up and left the synagogue, and entered Simon’s [Peter’s] home. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever, and they asked Him to help her.”
Peter loved his mother-in-law and wanted her to be healed, so he asked Jesus to heal her. “Standing over her, He rebuked the fever, and it left her; and she immediately got up and waited on them. While the sun was setting, all those who had any who were sick with various diseases brought them to Him; and laying His hands on each one of them, He was healing them” (vv. 39-40). After Jesus left Peter’s mother-in-law’s home, He went out and started healing people with various diseases. He was showing compassion for them.
Does God still heal people today? Of course He does. I believe God heals people. I believe in faith healing. I just don’t believe in faith healers. Jesus is the One who heals. He doesn’t need an intermediary to heal you. And notice how Jesus healed. He simply touched people and they were healed. God can heal if He wants to. But even if God chooses to heal a physical illness, the healing is temporary as far as this life goes. We will die eventually. The ultimate healing will occur when we are in God’s presence and we will be free from sickness forever and ever.
So how can we show the same compassion as Jesus did toward those who have physical illnesses? In Matthew 8:16-17 we see another example of Jesus healing. “They brought to Him many who were demon-possessed; and He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were ill. This was to fulfill what was spoken through Isaiah the prophet: ‘He Himself took our infirmities and carried away our diseases.’” Notice the prophecy said that Messiah “took our infirmities.” That verb “took” means “to carry the burden of another person.” Sometimes when we pray to Jesus, He does miraculously take away our infirmity. But sometimes He doesn’t take it away. Jesus doesn’t always remove our sickness, but He always bears our sickness. He places Himself under the load and makes the load lighter for the person who is carrying it. As Paul said in Galatians 6:2, we are to “bear one another’s burdens.”
When we see someone who is suffering, we are to come alongside that person. We are to say, “Let me help you carry the load.” That is how we show the same compassion in our life that Jesus showed.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “24” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2016.
Scripture quotations are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.