After spending time in a Samaritan town, Jesus returned to Galilee. Everywhere He went, He changed lives. So many of the moments we read in the Gospels are one-on-one encounters between someone with a need and Jesus. I love reading about these moments, because it’s a chance to witness how Jesus interacted with those who came to Him.
He took His time with each person. He already knew their hearts (John 2:25) and what their souls needed. He healed the physical hardships…and as He healed, He revealed His compassion and His authority. He taught the disciples and all those around Him what it meant to have faith in Him and in the Father.
As we read through some of those encounters today, we won’t witness only healing – we will witness forgiveness of sins. We will witness soul-restorations because of God’s grace.
I hope, that as we see the power and mercy of Jesus, we will remember that this same Savior wants us to cast our own cares upon Him – because He cares for us. He still meets us in one-on-one encounters if we call out to Him. He still has the power to change our lives – but first we have to trust Him with our needs.
And I pray that we will know for ourselves that He is able – and willing – to heal our bodies, hearts, and souls. I pray we, too, will say “we have seen remarkable things today.” (Luke 5:26)
After two days He left for Galilee. (Now Jesus Himself had pointed out that a prophet has no honor in His own country.) When He arrived in Galilee, the Galileans welcomed Him. They had seen all that He had done in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, for they also had been there.
Once more He visited Cana in Galilee, where He had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to Him and begged Him to come and heal his son, who was close to death.
“Unless you people see signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.”
The royal official said, “Sir, come down before my child dies.”
“Go,” Jesus replied,” your son will live.”
The man took Jesus at His word and departed. While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living. When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “Yesterday, at one in the afternoon, the fever left him.”
Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he and his whole household believed.
This was the second sign Jesus performed after coming from Judea to Galilee.
While Jesus was in one of the towns, a man came along who was covered with leprosy. When he saw Jesus, he fell with his face to the ground and begged Him, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.”
Jesus (moved with compassion*) reached out His hand touched the man. “I am willing,” He said. “Be clean!” And immediately the leprosy left him.
Then Jesus ordered him, “Don’t tell anyone, but go, show yourself to the priest and offer the sacrifices that Moses commanded for your cleansing, as a testimony to them.”
Yet the news about Him spread all the more, so that crowds of people came to hear Him and to be healed of their sicknesses. But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.
– Luke 5:12-16 (*the writer of Mark adds in this detail in Mk 1:41)
When Jesus came into Peter’s house, He saw Peter’s mother-in-law lying in bed with a fever. He touched her hand and the fever left her, and she got up and began to wait on Him.
When evening came, many who were demon-possessed were brought to Him, and He drove out the spirits with a word and healed all the sick. This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah: ‘He took up our infirmities and bore our diseases.’
One day Jesus was teaching, and Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting there. They had come from every village of Galilee and from Judea and Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was with Jesus to heal the sick.
Some men came carrying a paralyzed man on a mat and tried to take him into the house to lay him before Jesus. When they could not find a way to do this because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on his mat through the tiles into the middle of the crowd, right in front of Jesus.
When Jesus saw their faith, He said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.”
The Pharisees and the teachers of the law began thinking to themselves, “Who is this fellow who speaks blasphemy? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
Jesus knew what they were thinking and asked, “Why are you thinking these things in your hearts? Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgive,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.”
So He said to the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.”
Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God.
Everyone was amazed and gave praise to God. They were filled with awe and said, “We have seen remarkable things today.” –Luke 5:17-26