Saturday, July 18, 2009

Many and All

Many people followed him, and he cured them all.
Matthew 12:15

Note the words "many" and "all". They are not interchangeable. The text does not read that "all" followed Him and He cured "many". This almost seems to be the way people see it. That is, there seems to be the fear that if we follow Jesus, perhaps we will be the exception to the rule that He is able to cure "all". Maybe He won't be able to help us. Is this why so many stay away? Better to not try than to be disappointed? Perhaps. There is, unfortunately, a lot of disappointment in the world.

The text indicates that Jesus healed people of various diseases. In our experience, we do not see everyone healed who prays to Jesus. Is there a contradiction? Not at all! Rather, healing is now expanded to cover a great many more areas. Sometimes that is physical. There are numerous stories of people healed from various ailments. But often that is not the case. Instead, Jesus cures us from things that are much deeper.

Jesus came to save us from our sins. We could say He came to deliver us, heal us, or make us whole. It's all the same. Salvation is complete- wholistic, if you will. It is not just our bodies that are saved, but our souls as well.

So can Jesus really help us in our modern age? Can He cure anxiety, depression, addictions, and a host of other maladies plaguing our society? Yes, He can. And, yes, He will- if we will come to Him and follow Him.

Oh that the passage did read that "all" followed Him! But it doesn't. Instead, we have to settle for "many" who followed Him. And of the many, our Lord's own words elsewhere tell us that only few will finally choose the narrow way of eternal life. I wish it were not so. I know of so many who need the cures of Jesus, but for varying reasons do not come to Him. If only we would come, we would be healed.

I must confess that I am guilty of repeatedly keeping Jesus at arms length. I am usually afraid that He will take something from me. But I have found that each time I truly surrender to Him and follow Him rather than hold out, I am cured. I have found no exception to this. I am not always cured the way I wanted to be. But, nevertheless, I am always cured.

May this day find each of us not holding ourselves away from Jesus anymore, but rather that we would choose to become one of the many who follow Him and one of the all who find ourselves cured.

No comments: