When they had crossed over, they landed at Gennesaret and anchored there. As soon as they got out of the boat, people recognized Jesus. They ran throughout that whole region and carried the sick on mats to wherever they heard he was. And wherever he went — into villages, towns or countryside — they placed the sick in the marketplaces. They begged him to let them touch even the edge of his cloak, and all who touched him were healed.
There are some things about this passage that amaze me when I read it. The first thing I see is that immediately, the crowds recognized Jesus.
There were no newspapers or TVs. Most of us know what the major celebrities look like. We’ve seen their pictures in many places. But back then, nobody had a picture of Him. Yet as soon as they saw Him and His disciples, they knew exactly who they were.
Another thing I notice is that word spread quickly. People literally ran throughout that whole region, telling that Jesus had arrived. I’ve never witnessed this type of behavior.
At one point, part of a major motion picture was being filmed in our town. Nobody ran through the streets announcing the arrival of the stars and camera crews. It came and went without a lot of people even noticing.
But the notoriety of Jesus went even further than that, especially when it can to the sick and infirm. If they couldn’t walk to see Jesus, there were those who were willing to carry the sick people. In some cases, they were carried for miles.
Because of this, hundreds of people were arriving where the Lord was expected to show up. They were waiting for Him even though there was no guarantee that they would be ministered to.
Then, when Christ was walking through, they begged Him to simply let them touch His clothing. They didn’t want a special meeting. They weren’t waiting for an altar call.
“Just walk close enough so I can reach out to you.”
Jesus understood the working of the Holy Spirit. It wasn’t a carefully crafted media blitz. It was the Father pulling on the hearts of the people.
“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day.”
The results were overwhelming. Everyone who touched Him experienced the Lord’s healing power.
Think about it. They were healed simply by touching Jesus’ clothes as He walked by them. He felt no need to dramatically lay hands on them so that all would know who it was that performed the miracle.
The Lord had no need for self-promotion. He walked through the crowd getting as close to as many as He could in the time given to Him. I believe that’s one of the reasons that the Holy Spirit could work so powerfully through Him.
We need to spend time in His presence. In that way, we can pick up the same heartbeat that He had. Then the Holy Spirit can work in us to that same degree.
Question: How differently would we minister if we had the Lord’s heart?
© 2018 Nick Zaccardi