Bible Reading: Luke 6:17-19
Memory Verse: "The people all tried to touch Him, because power was coming from Him to heal them all." (Luke 6:19).
Mothers, fathers, children, foreigners and Jews; grandpas and grandmas, too! They were all there on the mountain side. Some had been carried on beds, sickly infants rode on their fathers' strong shoulders. Mothers lifted their little ones and pressed toward Jesus. All hoped that years of pain and suffering would end that day; if they could only touch Jesus.
Jesus had chosen twelve disciples and Luke, always careful to detail, names them for us. Perhaps Jesus had brought them to this place to teach them, but there was no time for that. A large crowd had gathered on a level place. Some had followed Him and Luke called them "a large crowd of His disciples." But an even larger crowd had come to be healed of their sicknesses. Some had come from as far away as Tyre and Sidon, on the coast of the Great Sea. Someone must have told them of Jesus' power to heal the sick. Others just wanted to hear His wise words.
As Jesus stood with the twelve, the crowd pressed around Him. "The people all tried to touch Him." They saw others instantly healed when they touched Him, why not them?
Luke tells us that "power was coming from Him and healing them all." All who touched Him? All who were possessed by evil spirits? All who were sick? Whatever, they were healed and had strength to stand and hear the wonderful teaching that Jesus gave that day. (Luke 6)
That same power still flows from a loving Savior. God is the same, "yesterday, today and forever," and Jesus is God, now as then. You cannot see Him or touch Him in the flesh as these people did long ago. But you can touch Him by the Spirit who has come to take His place. Before Jesus left them and ascended to heaven, He told His disciples and those who wanted to hear, "I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you." (John 14:18). He came at Pentecost (Acts 2). The Holy Spirit came and took Jesus' place. And the Holy Spirit is here among us today to counsel, comfort and heal. And Jesus assured those who believed, "Greater things than these you will do. . . ." (John 14:12).
Power to heal is the power of the Holy Spirit. Peter and John were going up to the temple when they came to a lame man. He asked them for money (Acts 3:3). Peter knew the Holy Spirit would heal this crippled man. "Look at us," he said. When the man gave them his attention, Peter said, "Silver or gold I do not have, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk."
Peter took the crippled man's right hand and helped him stand on his feet. And the man was healed - not by Peter, but by the power of God's Spirit. Peter told the amazed crown, "By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus' name and the faith that comes through Him that has given this complete healing. . . . as you can all see." (Acts 3:16). You can touch Him for yourself. You can touch Him now. By faith you can touch the Lord Jesus for yourself and in His name be healed.
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