Sunday 29 July, 2018

Matthew 9:27-34

27 As Jesus went on from there, two blind men followed him, calling out, “Have mercy on us, Son of David!” 28 When he had gone indoors, the blind men came to him, and he asked them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” “Yes, Lord,” they replied. 29 Then he touched their eyes and said, “According to your faith let it be done to you”; 30 and their sight was restored. Jesus warned them sternly, “See that no one knows about this.” 31 But they went out and spread the news about him all over that region. 32 While they were going out, a man who was demon-possessed and could not talk was brought to Jesus. 33 And when the demon was driven out, the man who had been mute spoke. The crowd was amazed and said, “Nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel.” 34 But the Pharisees said, “It is by the prince of demons that he drives out demons.”

What was it like for these men who encountered Jesus? As blind men they were most probably unable to work, therefore unable to earn a living and dependent on others. In those times they would have been seen as unable to make good husbands and fathers if they could not support a family. They could not see the blue sky, or a sunset, or people’s faces… It is the kind of existence a person might feel trapped in.

Or what about the mute man? Not able to speak: to converse with others, to express his thoughts or to ask a question. How isolating it must have been.

How radical their encounter with Jesus was. The blind men could see and the mute man could talk. What a world of possibility opened up to them. What freedom, independence, connection, contribution and purpose was now open to them. No longer trapped, no longer isolated, they could take up their places in society with joy.

Am I experiencing this kind of radical encounter with Jesus? Am I telling others about what Jesus can do? Am I expecting and asking God to set people free?

God, please help me to live with the bold expectation of the blind men, and to believe that you want to heal, restore, deliver and liberate people today, just as you did then. Amen

Written by Bethany Waugh

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