January 18

Text: Matthew 4:23, 24

 And Jesus was going about in all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness among the people.  And the news about Him went out into all Syria; and they brought to Him all who were ill, taken with various diseases and pains, demoniacs, epileptics, paralytics; and He healed them. (NASB)

Jesus was the man who did the impossible!  The things listed that Jesus healed are impressive.  In his time, to distinguish between demoniacs, epileptics, and paralytics borders on the unthinkable—let alone to enable the blind to see or the lame to walk.  No wonder multitudes from everywhere came to see this man who did that day’s impossible.  We still would!

Two things are called to your attention.  First, the writer distinguished between spiritual causes and physical causes of sickness.  Second, the writer verified Jesus confirmed his unselfish spiritual interests in people through his unselfish concern for their physical need.  Jesus verified the reality of his message through his concern for physical needs.  He was not “showing off!”  He was proving he and God cared!

Too often today many who claim to be Christians selfishly exploit those they claim to spiritually help.  That is a major reason some have no respect for Christianity or those who say they are Christians.  The key to effectively helping others is unselfish motives!  The key to disillusionment is exploitation!

Christians, be unselfish!  Never exploit!  Build credibility, do not destroy it.

Suggestion for reflection: Consciously build spiritual credibility through unselfishly caring for others.  (Read Acts 4:32-37 and 1 Thessalonians 1:5-7.)

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