‘The genuine realist, if he is an unbeliever will always find strength and ability to disbelieve in the miraculous and if he is confronted with a miracle as an irrefutable fact he would rather disbelieve his own senses than admit the fact. Faith does not…spring from the miracle but the miracle from faith.’ – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
If you’re like me, miracles at times can seem confusing. Unforseen or unwanted things still happen to me no matter how hard I pray. Even answers to prayer can sometimes be confusing.
What I have found over the years of being a student of Jesus is that prayer does not work like a vending machine insert request, receive an answer.
Likewise miracles don’t work because of a formula they work because of our faith and that is not a quantifiable measure so it’s not about how much? It’s about the person in whom you put your faith – Jesus.
The greatest miracle worker is Jesus the Christ. When He walked upon this earth, He performed many miracles but only 36no. of them are recorded in the Bible. In fact the Gospels actually downplay them. Jesus often asked those who had seen a miracle not to tell anyone else.
Although Jesus never denied anyone who asked for physical healing, He always turned down requests for a demonstration to amaze the crowds and impress important people. Jesus recognised early on in His ministry that the excitement generated by miracles, did not automatically convert into a life changing faith.
Again Jesus never did a miracle as a sign or to prove Himself because He understood that signs are not proof. Signs are simply markers pointing the way to something or someone else for people who are looking in the right direction.
The miracles of Jesus usually do not contradict natural law but rather replicates the normal activity of creation at a different speed and on a smaller scale. And some of the miracles done locally are what God has already done universally.
Some sceptics of course, have no place for miracles and for them any account of a supernatural event must by definition be discarded and dismissed.
People have forgotten that Jesus is still a miracle worker. In these strangest of times, it is the miracle working Jesus that is necessary for the world.
The problem with the world has always been and still is the problem of sin. And Jesus has always been and still is the solution to that problem. He is able and still saves souls and transforms lives.
She was Hindered – 18 tells us she had a ‘disabling’ spirit for eighteen years. And in v.16 we see the source of that disability it was Satan. Romans 8:15 reminds us, Jesus does not bind us but frees us.
The Devil still binds people today with: Alcohol, substance dependencies, other life controlling habits, identity crisis and wrong self image.
She was Hurting: 11b she was bent or doubled over, She was never able to look up and see the sky but always had to look down to the ground. Yet sin is like that, it will embarrass you, it will hurt you.
She was Helplessness: v.11 ‘she could not…’ She had probably tried many times to straighten herself up but she would always fail.
Many are like her today, they try to lift themselves out of sin with their own power. They need to know that only Jesus can lift them and make them right.
The awesome power of a God given conviction to say NO is a simple solution to life controlling habits. We can’t do it in our own strength but we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.
She Was Hopeful: v.10 Notice where she was? At the Synagogue, at God’s house. She was there looking to find hope.
The Christ (Through the Crowd)
12 ‘when Jesus saw her’ Out of the crowd, Jesus saw her not the building or the choir but her. He saw her pain, he saw her problem.
Jesus spoke to her with tender words. Words of care and concern about her problem.
The Cure: v.12
Notice Rapidness of the Cure: 13a When Jesus touched her, she was made well right there on the spot. He didn’t’ tell her to go home and take pills for 30 days but He made her straight immediately.
Jesus can make a sinful life straight. Jesus knows just where to touch you, He knows how to meet your need.
The Rejection of the Cure: 14-15 The leader of the synagogue couldn’t stand it. In the midst of the rejoicing, he jumped to his feet and ordered everyone to be quiet and stop rejoicing. There wasn’t going to be any healing in HIS synagogue on the Sabbath.
Jesus pulled back the curtain of their life and it showed they were hypocrites, they were more concerned the needs of their oxen that the needs of people.
Jesus wants to do the same for you that He did for this woman. Here’s His word for you: ‘Straighten up.’
If your marriage, relationship life is a mess and you feel bent over from the burden, let Jesus touch you, then straighten up and praise Him.
In this time of social distancing we may not be able to touch you but Jesus can.
We cannot be touched by Jesus and stay the same. Let Him touch you and deliver you today.